Fast-starting HHS wins easily

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Jim Franz/Beloit Daily News Hononegah junior Jordan King (23) looks to make a crosscourt pass during Tuesday night's rout of Harlem.

MACHESNEY PARK, Ill. - So much for the slow start Randy Weibel was worried about.

The Hononegah head coach admitted he was concerned about his girls basketball team falling out of sync after having its game with Harlem postponed by Friday's stormy weather.

"With the unfortunate postponement we had last Friday and then coming in here on Senior Night, I was really concerned how we'd start," Weibel said.

The Indians (23-4, 13-1) put him at ease quickly, roaring to a 22-2 lead on their way to a surprisingly easy 74-36 romp in NIC-10 play and spoiling the celebration for seven senior Huskies.

"We really felt it was important to come out strong since we hadn't played in a awhile and we have regionals coming up," said 6-foot junior Cali Schmitz, who tallied 13 points to tie teammate Hannah Malcomson. "Our legs were fresh so there were no excuses there."

Leading the scoring parade for the Indians, as usual, was Jordan King with 16 points.

The junior standout did most of her damage right from the opening tip. She hit three of her first four shots and had nine points in the first quarter as Hononegah finished it with a 26-3 lead. After that, she became more of a distributor for the well-balanced Indians.

"That's as well as we've started a game all year," Weibel said. "We talk about getting off to a good start and establishing ourselves. We came out with a ton of energy and once we got going we were hard to stop."

King had two 3-pointers in the game and as a team, the Indians finished with 14 triples. Malcomson hit three treys and nine different Indians in all converted behind the arc.

"Jordan understands that she doesn't have to do it all," Weibel said. "Sometimes to a fault, she's a little too unselfish. She allowed other people to help her tonight and we knocked down a lot of shots. That was the bottom line. Hannah played her best game of the year. Hopefully, now she really gets on a roll. She can be great for us down the stretch."

The Indians made it 37-9 with 3:39 left in the first half on a fastbreak layup by Schmitz. Treys by Julia Burns and Jenisa Peltonen closed the half to give Hononegah a 47-14 advantage at the half.

"We expected a closer game after the way they played us the first time," Schmitz said. "We don't take any team lightly. We always say the only team that can beat us is ourselves. We just have to keep that mentality going and keep hitting shots"

There was no miracle comeback by the Huskies (20-8, 11-4) and the Indians were able to empty their bench in the fourth quarter.

If they can shoot like they did against Harlem, the Indians are going to be a difficult team to knock out in the postseason.

"If we do that, don't turn the ball over and rebound, yeah, we're pretty tough," Weibel said. "It's really that simple. It doesn't matter who were playing. Just do the things we do every day in practice and see what happens."

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