Herald-Whig

Blue Devils pull away in fourth quarter

Stephanie Anders
By SHANE HULSEY
Sports Writer | 217-223-5100
sports@whig.com | @WhigSports
Posted: Dec. 5, 2017 12:01 am Updated: Dec. 6, 2017 1:10 am

HAMILTON, Ill. -- The Quincy High School girls basketball team started slowly Tuesday, but a 20-2 run in the fourth quarter sealed a 61-43 victory over West Hancock.

The Blue Devils led 30-26 with 5:28 left in the third quarter when Kiley Espinoza converted on a three-point play. The Titans answered with a 7-0 run to tie the game at 33, but QHS closed the quarter on an 8-4 run to take a 41-37 lead.

Then the Blue Devils caught fire.

An 8-0 run in the first 1:45 of the quarter gave QHS its largest lead at 49-37. The Blue Devils followed a put-back by West Hancock's Emma Knipe with 4:32 left with a 12-0 run over the next three minutes.

Stephanie Anders finished with 19 points, with eight points coming during the Blue Devils' 20-2 run.

"When I first met her (Anders), there was a little hesitation: ‘Should I drive now?'" QHS coach Martin Pazanin said. "Now she just goes out there and plays hard."

QHS sophomore Olivia Edwards had 17 points to form a lethal one-two punch with Anders.

"They're both athletic," Pazanin said. "They put in a lot of work this summer, and you can see the rewards on the court."

The approach on offense is simple for Anders.

"Our coaches always talk about swinging the ball and looking for the open shots," she said. "I feel that I should just take those open shots when they come."

Bre Bordewick had seven of Quincy's first 12 points, but the Blue Devils trailed 13-12 until Anders made a three with 5.7 seconds left in the first quarter. The Blue Devils eventually led 26-22 at halftime.

Pazanin said the Blue Devils had their defensive struggles at times in the first half, but they stepped up in the second half.

"I didn't think we were seeing the ball very well in the first half," he said. "We really cut down the penetration in the second half. The players were tired, but they pushed through it, and the defense was very good in the second half."

The Blue Devils played an aggressive offense that led to turnover problems at times. Pazanin emphasizes that, because of this aggressive offense, his team must find a balance on the offensive end.

"We're sort of building that balance right now of what's a good pass and what isn't," he said. "We improved a ton from last Saturday (a victory over Oswego), though, which is great to see."

Kailee Pfeiferling led the Titans with 11 points.

Quincy 61, West Hancock 43

QUINCY (4-1)

Edwards 6 5-6 17, Bordewick 3 0-0 7, Chevalier 0 0-0 0, Ozbelent 1 0-2 2, Neally 0 0-0 0, Abdullah 1 0-0 2, Roberts 0 0-0 0, Sapp 0 0-0 0, Espinoza 2 1-1 6, Anders 8 0-2 19, Cole 0 0-0 0, Nelson 3 2-4 8. Totals 24 7-14 61.

WEST HANCOCK (6-5)

Jacquot 1 0-0 2, Greer 2 0-1 4, Boyles 2 3-4 7, Knipe 3 0-0 6, Pfeiferling 4 2-3 11, Andrews 3 2-2 9, Gray 1 0-0 2, Carel 1 0-0 2, Fox 0 0-0 0, Hollis 0 0-0 0, Radel 0 0-0 0. Totals 17 7-10 43.

Quincy 15 11 15 20--61

West Hancock 13 9 15 6--43

3-point field goals--Quincy 5 (Anders 3, Espinoza, Bordewick), West Hancock 2 (Pfeiferling, Andrews). Fouls--Quincy 16, West Hancock 13. Fouled out--Knipe.