WOODSTOCK – With some players on the Indian Creek girls basketball team battling illness, Timberwolves coach Paul Muchmore hoped a zone defense would slow down Woodstock on Saturday.
The strategy worked for most of the game as Indian Creek, which was without starter Samantha Mosley, who did not make the trip due to illness, trailed the Blue Streaks by two points entering the fourth quarter. Unfortunately for the Timberwolves, Woodstock began consistently knocking down open looks against the zone defense and the Blue Streaks put away Indian Creek in a 52-41 nonconference win.
Muchmore said prior to the Woodstock game, the Timberwolves (8-8) had played zone only for approximately two total minutes this season and have never worked on it in practice. But with the injury bug hitting the team and against a Blue Streaks team featuring a deep bench, Muchmore hoped the zone defense would help his team.
"I thought we kind of got worn down," Muchmore said. "They had more players running in and out. That's part of the game. Some of the girls started to get tired and made some mental mistakes. Credit to [Brecken Overly] for making those shots."
The Blue Streaks (6-8) didn't appear fazed by the zone defense. Overly scored a game-high 14 points, including eight in the pivotal fourth quarter. The sophomore guard's two baskets on consecutive possessions midway through the fourth gave Woodstock its biggest lead of the game, 47-35.
The Timberwolves took a 9-4 led in the first quarter, but by halftime the Blue Streaks were out front, 23-21. Indian Creek fought back to tie Woodstock at 29 with 3:11 remaining in the third quarter on Olivia Harvell's basket. However the Timberwolves weren't able to pull ahead. Josie Diehl led Indian Creek with 14 points while Alexis Van Wyhe and Madison Russell added 10 points each.
"I don't know if it was confidence or maybe the freshness of people playing with different people during the end of the game," Woodstock coach Marty Hammond said of his team playing better in the fourth. "So that was a different aspect that the kids were like, 'hey now it's my turn.' And they stepped up and completed [the win]."