For the better part of the first quarter, the Lincolnwood High School girls basketball team looked like anything other than a first-year program still finding itself. Eventually though, the experience factor played a bigger role in the second half and allowed North Greene to hand the Lady Lancers a loss in their home debut, 46 to 19.
In Lincolnwood's first girls basketball home game under the Lancer banner since 1985 (Litchfield played at the Woodshed a few times during their co-op with Lincolnwood), the Lancers not only kept pace with the visiting Spartans, but were beating them midway through the quarter.
Katelyn Payne knocked down the game's first basket 20 seconds in and would add two more field goals before four minutes had passed by, giving the Lancers a 6-2 advantage at one point.
But foul trouble would send Payne to the bench and North Greene came back to go on an 8-0 run before Cassie Krager scored with 25 seconds to play to cut the Lincolnwood deficit to 10-8.
The second quarter would start in similar fashion to the first, with the Lancers scoring first on Krager's second basket of the game.
The 10-10 tie would only last a few moments though as North Greene re-upped their lead to four, before Sydney Herman hit her first three of the night. The Spartans would outscore the Lancers 12-3 from that point on, with Herman accounting for the points on another triple.
The lead could have been greater for North Greene had it not been for a 4-for-14 performance from the free-throw line.
Trailing by ten going into the second half, Lincolnwood was still within striking distance, but the experience of the Spartans began to take its toll on the Lancers. Steals by the North Greene defenders would result in limited opportunities for the Lincolnwood offense as the Spartans shut out the hosts in the third quarter, 10-0.
The North Greene defense would continue to be the story in the final period as they held Lincolnwood to just three points, a two by Krager that tied her for the team lead in points with Herman and Payne, and a free throw by Shelby Hattenbach.
For their part, North Greene would get a solid game from Jenna Barnard, who netted 22 of the Spartans' 46 points. Barnard would do most of her damage off of opportunities from Lincolnwood turnovers, which resulted in an open basket or a trip to the foul line, where she hit 6-of-9 chances.
Prior to the varsity contest, the JV Lancers hosted Hillsboro, who graciously came over to give the younger players some experience after it was announced that North Greene didn't have enough players for a JV team.
The Hillsboro JV squad, comprised of mostly freshmen and sophomores, picked up some valuable minutes on the court and a 43-9 victory. While they would take the loss, the young Lancers, many of whom have never played organized basketball, got the chance to go up with a team at their level, albeit a very good one.
Ally Schnarre would lead Hillsboro with 12 points, while Sierra Compton and Meagan White had six points each. Abbigail Schreiber, Brianna Guinn, Alex Frailey and Adyson McCammack added four points each, with Kenadie Carlock finishing out the scoring with three points.
Haelee Damm would hit a three to lead Lincolnwood, while Amanda Seelbach, Cora Stevens and Sophie Rainwater all had two points each.
The Lancers will wrap up this week with a road trip to Kincaid on Thursday, Dec. 5, to play the South Fork Ponies, followed by another home contest on Friday, Dec. 6, against Gillespie.
December 2 at Raymond
North Greene 10 16 10 10 46
Lincolnwood 8 8 0 3 19
North Greene (46) - Jenna Barnard 22, Cami Hunt 9, Hailey Thompson 6, Maddison Osborne 3, Taylor Gilmore 2, Bailey Berry 2, Tori Smith 2. Totals: 19 7-20 46.
Lincolnwood (19) - Katelyn Payne 6, Cassie Krager 6, Sydney Herman 6, Shelby Hattenbach 1. Totals: 8 1-3 19.
Three-point field goals: North Greene 1 (Osborne 1); Lincolnwood 2 (Herman 2).
Records: Lincolnwood (0-2); North Greene (3-4).
Hillsboro JV 13 13 8 9 43
Lincolnwood JV 2 0 5 2 9
Hillsboro JV (43) - Ally Schnarre 12, Sierra Compton 6, Meagan White 6, Alex Frailey 4, Abbigail Schreiber 4, Brianna Guinn 4, Adyson McCammack 4, Kenadie Carlock 3. Totals: 19 2-5 43.
Lincolnwood JV (9) - Haelee Damm 3, Amanda Seelbach 2, Cora Stevens 2, Sophie Rainwater 2. Totals: 4 0-2 9.
Three-point field goals: Hillsboro 3 (Schnarre 2, Carlock 1); Lincolnwood 1 (Damm 1).
Records: Hillsboro JV (1-0); Lincolnwood JV (0-1).
The Journal-News and its sister paper The Raymond News handed out 101 bags of popcorn at Monday's Lincolnwood girls basketball game. Thank you to all who came out to support the program.