Win over East Troy marks third time this season team’s held an opponent to less than 30 points

By Dan Truttschel

Correspondent

A stingy defense can go a long way in a team’s quest for greatness.

If that’s the case, the Big Foot girls basketball team may just be on the verge of something.

For the third time in 2015-16, the Chiefs held an opponent to less than 30 points in a 47-28 Rock Valley Conference crossover victory at East Troy Monday night.

The win improved the Chiefs to 12-4 overall and 9-2 in the RVC.

Another strong defensive effort didn’t happen by mistake, Big Foot coach Rick Schoenbeck said.

“I preach defense wins championships, and that’s what this team has done,” he said. “The girls are putting a lot of pressure on the other team.

“My three guards (Courtney Schoenbeck, Olivia Briggs and Morgan Courier) are in the grill of opposing team’s guards. The stiff pressure prevents opponents from running the offense and changes what they can do. These three girls are strong, fast and know the game of basketball as well as anyone.”

Schoenbeck said the focus Monday was East Troy’s standout post player, Katrina Santos, who was held to nine points, 11 points below her average.

Big Foot led 22-14 at halftime and outscored the Trojans 25-14 in the second half to cruise to the 19-point victory.

Morgan Courier led the Chiefs with 15 points and here steals, followed by Brooke Wellhausen with 11 points and Courtney Schoenbeck with six points, five rebounds and five steals. Payton Courier added six points and five rebounds.

Schoenbeck said he felt like his team attacked East Troy’s zone defense fairly well all night.

“They played a really packed back zone and made us work for scores,” he said. “We are really good at getting to the basket off the dribble and teams are filling the lane on us.

“We have become better outside shooters, and at times, still need to slow down on offense in the half court and be patient for the mid-range shot.”

Big Foot remained one game behind Brodhead in the chase for the South Division title. The Cardinals, who beat the Chiefs in the first meeting earlier this year, are 10-1 in the RVC.

The Chiefs travel to Parkview Friday night to face the Vikings (5-11 overall, 2-9 RVC). Big Foot travels to Delavan Feb. 1 for a non-conference matchup with the Comets.

Schoenbeck likes where his team is at – but knows there still is work to be done.

“This group is peaking at the right time, as they are playing together very well as a team,” he said. “We have improved our defense, free-throw and field-goal percentage and have improved our depth to see all 10 girls contributing most nights.

“We need to stay focused (Friday) and win one game at a time as we push to win Big Foot a conference championship. The Rock Valley has proven to be one of the toughest girls basketball conferences around.”

Chiefs cruise past Spartans

Big Foot opened its week with a 66-51 win Jan. 21 over visiting McFarland.

The Chiefs led by just four points at halftime but enjoyed a 41-30 advantage in the final 18 minutes.

Courtney Schoenbeck led the way with 15 points and four assists, followed by Payton Courier with 14 points and 10 rebounds and Briggs with 13 points and five assists. Wellhausen added 11 points and eight rebounds, while Morgan Courier had nine points and three steals.

 

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