LINDEN — For the second consecutive game, North Montgomery’s Grace McClaskey shut down the opposing teams’ best player. And on Saturday night, the Chargers’ offense came alive in a 50-41 win over Crawfordsville in the third-place game of the 13th Annual Girls’ Sugar Creek Classic presented by Franciscan Health.
In Thursday night’s loss to Southmont, Lauren Kellerman led the Athenians with 23 points. And just like McClaskey held Western Boone’s Kara Brewer to four points on Thursday, the junior held Kellerman to five on Saturday.
“Grace McClaskey did a great job again on their teams’ best player,” North coach Ryan Nuppnau said. “She held Brewer to no field goals on Thursday, and tonight she held Kellerman to one field goal. She’s really become our defensive stopper.”
The Chargers (4-3) took a 20-17 halftime lead, and stretched it to 34-25 after three quarters, and iced the game with a near flawless shooting night from the free throw line.
“North brought it,” Crawfordsville coach Tyler Smith said. “I thought we brought it in spurts. A physical game, and credit North for knocking down what seemed like 95 percent of foul shots.”
North Montgomery connected on 24-of-30 (80 percent) from the charity stripe, including an 11-of-14 performance from Madi Welch. The sophomore scored all of her 13 points in the second half — stepping into a more prominent role with Sidney Dugard sidelined with an in-game injury, while the Chargers also lost Makenzie Rominger to a knee injury in Thursday night’s loss.
“They’re fighters, and we’ve seen over and over again that if one girl goes down than other girls are going to step up,” Nuppnau said. “And today it was Madi Welch. She stepped up with some confidence, and she was a big ball handler for us today.”
Katie Rice also stepped in and ran the show on both ends of the floor for the Chargers — recording a
double-double with 15 points and 12 rebounds. Maddie Moseley chipped in 13 points, and earned a spot on the all-tournament team.
She Williamson broke into double-figures for the second straight night to lead Crawfordsville (1-5) with 16 points, and nine rebounds, and was named to the all-tournament team. Maycee York also made her season debut, chipping in 14 points, and helped lead the Athenians to a 43-38 advantage on the boards with eight of her own.
“She played well, and played aggressive, which is what we want,” Smith said. “We had been lacking inside — so to get her back and have help on the boards, but also a post presence. We are definitely excited to have her back.”
North Montgomery is back in action at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday at home against Fountain Central, while the Athenians host Greencastle at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.