DARLINGTON – Darlington head coach Kelly Rose has been waiting all season to see the team on the court that she knew was within her players. On Friday night, she got glimpses of that team and she was pleased with what she saw.
The Lady Redbirds (6-11 overall, 4-6 SWAL) used an early 15-0 scoring run to charge out to a huge cushion on Boscobel and they maintained a comfortable double-digit lead the rest of the night to tame the Bulldogs, 66-45, in SWAL girls’ basketball action.
Junior guard Sadie Fitzsimons (six points) and sophomore forward Kennedy Rankin (four) combined for 10 of Darlington’s 15 points during their run to turn a 2-2 tie into a 17-2 advantage, and the Bulldogs (3-14, 2-8) never got closer than 10 points the rest of the night as the ‘Birds avenged a two-point loss to Boscobel from Dec. 15.
“These are the things we’ve been working for all year– the little things, the attitude, the coming together as a team. All of it came tonight and they played the way I expected them to,” said Rose.
Things weren’t always pretty for the two teams as they combined for 60 turnovers, 59 fouls and 81 free throws on the night. The Redbirds forced 34 Boscobel turnovers and went 25-for-46 from the foul line on the way to the win.
“Sometimes the flow isn’t exactly what you want it to be, but I think the girls maintained their composure to the point that they knew it was their pace. We got ahead of ourselves a couple of times. Ultimately, we got it back together,” Rose added.
Rankin scored 13 of her team-high 15 points in the first half to lead the Redbirds out to a 38-18 halftime lead. Fitzsimons added nine of her 12 points in the first half, while sophomore Emma Crist netted eight of her 12 points in that half as well.
Fitzsimons went 8-of-10 at the foul line in the game for the ‘Birds.
Junior Taryn Rankin scored six of her 11 points in the second half to keep the hosts in the lead. Senior Molly McDaniel scored all six of her points in the second half, and junior Taylor Jacobson netted five of her eight points in the final half.
Darlington topped the Bulldogs from 2-point range, 16-11, 3-point range, 3-2, and the foul line, 25-17, in the victory.
Sophomore guard Danielle Ernst led Boscobel with a game-high 17 points.
At Hazel Green, on Tuesday, Jan. 26, Southwestern’s Michelle Budden poured in a game-high 22 points, Miranda Brand chipped in with 17 points and Rachael Myers added 11 to lead the Lady Wildcats over the visiting Redbirds, 62-55, for their first SWAL victory of the season.
Darlington also placed three players in double figures led by Kennedy Rankin with 13 points. Taylor Jacobson followed with 11 and Sadie Fitzsimons netted 10 for the ‘Birds, who were unable to complete the season sweep against the Wildcats (2-14, 1-9).
At Darlington, on Monday, Feb. 1, the Lady Redbirds made it two wins in a row as they used a huge second-half effort to pull away from the visiting Pecatonica Vikings for a 48-27 non-conference victory.
The ‘Birds held a slight 18-14 advantage at the break, but they came out and outscored the Vikings by a 30-13 margin in the second half to run away with a 21-point win.
Emma Crist topped her season-high for the second game in a row after finishing with a team-high 13 points. Taylor Jacobson followed with 10 points and Taryn Rankin added six for the hosts.
Liz Tisch scored 13 points to lead the Vikings (2-14).
Darlington has upcoming SWAL road games at Mineral Point on Thursday, Feb. 4, and Iowa-Grant on Tuesday, Feb. 9.
Boscobel….. 18 27 – 45
Darlington… 38 28 – 66
Boscobel – Zimple 2, Bray 7, Ernst 17, Beinborn 7, Davis 6, Wacker 4, Grassel 2. Totals – 13 17-33 45.
Darlington – Sadie Fitzsimons 10, Molly McDaniel 6, Emma Crist 12, Taryn Rankin 11, Taylor Jacobson 8, Kennedy Rankin 15, Reagan Roelli 2. Totals – 19 25-46 66.
3-point goals– B 2 (Ernst 2), D 3 (Jacobson 1, K. Rankin 2). Total fouls– B 31, D 28. Fouled Out– B: Davis, Wacker.
Darlington……… 25 30 – 55
Southwestern…. 30 32 – 62
Darlington – Sadie Fitzsimons 10, Chelsea Golackson 7, Molly McDaniel 2, Emma Crist 4, Taryn Rankin 4, Taylor Jacobson 11, Kennedy Rankin 13, Reghan Roelli 4. Totals – 17 18-32 55.
Southwestern – M. Myers 4, Kruser 4, Riniker 4, R. Myers 11, Budden 22, Kemp 17. Totals – 21 17-29 62.
3-point goals– D 4 (Fitzsimons 3, K. Rankin 1), S 3 (R. Myers 3). Total fouls– D na, S na. Fouled Out– D: Jacobson, Rankin; SW: Kemp.
Pecatonica…… 14 13 – 27
Darlington……. 18 30 – 48
Pecatonica – Keast 3, J. Erickson 2, S. Erickson 7, Tisch 13, Mabin 2. Totals – 0 0-0 37.
Darlington – Sadie Fitzsimons 5, Chelsea Golackson 1, Molly McDaniel 2, Emma Crist 13, Taryn Rankin 6, Taylor Jacobson 10, Kennedy Rankin 5, Reghan Roelli 1, Hannah Kelly 5. Totals – 0 0-0 48.
3-point goals– P 1 (S. Erickson 1), D 2 (Fitzsimons 1, Kelly 1). Total fouls– P 17, D 17.