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home : sports : sports   April 29, 2016

1/4/2014 12:41:00 AM
Prep girls basketball: Ottawa beats Morris

Brad Martin
NewsTribune Sports Writer

OTTAWA — It took a little while to shake off some of the rust of not playing in two weeks, but the Ottawa girls basketball team picked up a 65-48 victory over Morris on Friday night in a Northern Illinois Big 12 Conference crossover at Kingman Gym.

“We came in averaging 11.7 turnovers a game and ended with a few more tonight,” Ottawa coach Mike Cooper said. “Some of that I think has to do with not playing in two weeks and some is Morris played well, but I was happy with our overall performance.”

It took a little while to get the offense going, but Cassidy Rice helped jump start things with a 3-pointer from the top of the key for an early 10-6 lead.

Morris came right back with a 3-pointer from Julie Jurastis and a long jumper from Alex Kjellesvik to trim the Lady Pirates’ lead to 14-11.

One thing that got the Lady Pirates going was unselfish play. Near the end of the first quarter, Catie Carlson made a pass to Rice for the layup.

“That is one great thing about this team is the unselfish play,” Cooper said. “This group loves to drive and make that extra pass to an open teammate.”

In the second quarter, the Lady Pirates started to take over the game.

Sam McGrath collected a stick back and Jasmin Bailey drained a shot from behind the arc for a 23-16 lead.

Moments later, Rice connected from down town again, and Jessica Wignes followed with a 15-foot jump shot to cap off a 15-2 run and a 33-16 lead.

Twin sister Jill Wignes penetrated into the lane and kicked the ball to Jordan Hayne for a layup that helped the Lady Pirates take a 36-22 lead at halftime.

In the third quarter, the Lady Pirates started out strong with Rice hitting back-to-back 3-pointers for a 42-23 lead.

Thanks in part to three consecutive turnovers from the Lady Pirates, Morris cut the Lady Pirates lead to 46-33 after a stick back from Jade Fischer.

Ottawa quickly regained control in the fourth as Rice hit yet another 3-pointer as did Bailey, and then a stick back from McGrath helped propel the Lady Pirates to a 64-48 victory.

The Lady Pirates were led by Rice with 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Bailey added 13 points.

Morris was led by Jurastis with 14 points.

Ottawa improves to 12-2 on the season while Morris falls to 8-7.

Brad Martin Sr. can be reached at 220-6939, or at

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