Prairie Ridge saved its best for last Wednesday night. For three quarters the Wolves struggled to keep Dundee-Crown off the offensive glass and trailed by four points, but that all turned around over the final eight minutes. Prairie Ridge outscored the Chargers 18-4 in the final quarter to pull out a 55-45 win in Fox Valley Valley action.
The Chargers had scored 15 second-chance points through the first three quarters, but were held to none in the final frame.
“That was the big difference,” Prairie Ridge coach Rob Baker said. “We were finally able to hold them to one shot. They were killing us with the offensive rebounds, so we started having all five of our players crash the boards. We just kept on fighting and got after it. Once we were able to get that turned around the game started turning around for us.”
On the offensive end the Wolves started attacking the basket in the final quarter and the result was 5-of-9 shooting from the field and 8-of-10 converted free throws.
“We did a much better job of executing on offense at the end,” Baker said. “We have individuals with a lot of skills, but it wasn’t until we started running our sets that we started getting better results.”
The Wolves (16-8, 9-2) trailed 41-35 late in the third quarter, but scored the final basket of the period and then the first 10 points of the fourth quarter to pull ahead 47-41. Aly Clark’s basket with 5:08 left to play tied the game at 41-41. On the Wolves’ next possession Maddie Drain gave them a 43-41 lead with 4:41 on the clock with a strong move inside.
Drain had 14 points and 11 rebounds for Prairie Ridge. Sarah Le Beau led the Wolves in scoring with 16 points.
“We knew we had to come on strong at the end,” Le Beau said. “They were beating inside most of the game, but we kept playing hard and we were finally able to get some defensive stops.”
The Chargers (7-18, 2-9) missed 10 straight shots during a stretch late in the third quarter and early in the fourth and made just 2-of-15 attempts from the field in the final quarter. The Chargers were also outscored 14-1 at the free throw line in the game.
“[Prairie Ridge] did a great job of attacking the basket in that final quarter,” D-C coach Sarah Miller said. “We didn’t do such a good job of finishing in the fourth quarter.”
The loss spoiled an outstanding game by the Chargers Jesania Laboy, who had 19 points and 15 rebounds.