East Troy High School’s Mackenzie Lindow (No. 14) shoots a free throw in the Dec. 8 win over Brodhead. Londow iced three of four free throw attempts during the final minute to preserve the Trojan victory. (Eric Kramer photo)

East Troy High School’s Mackenzie Lindow (No. 14) shoots a free throw in the Dec. 8 win over Brodhead. Londow iced three of four free throw attempts during the final minute to preserve the Trojan victory. (Eric Kramer photo)

By Dan Truttschel

Correspondent

It’s true that every single presents new challenges – for both hopeful and previous contenders.

But significant victories still can’t be overlooked.

And last week, the East Troy High School girls basketball team notched a big one.

The Trojans built a 10-point lead and iced things at the free-throw line in a 54-47 Rock Valley Conference win  over visiting Brodhead Dec. 8.

To say that Brodhead, which fell to 1-3 this year, brings an impressive resume wherever it goes would be an understatement.

Dating back to the 2011-12 campaign, the Cardinals have posted a 110-16 overall record, including a 69-6 mark in the RVC and five South Division titles.

“They have a good program,” East Troy coach Jeff Brown said. “There were a lot of people who thought they would be in the middle of the road in their side (of the conference) this year, so it was a good win for us.

“We played really well and did a lot of good things, especially defensively. It was a nice win.”

East Troy’s defensive effort began with stopping Brodhead leading scorer Erin Nyhus, who is averaging 17 points a game to this point.

Nyhus has a 43-point effort already this year and prior to the East Troy game was averaging 23 a night.

Her total against the Trojans? Zero.

Brown threw a box-and-one defense at Nyhus and sent several girls at her all night long.

“We emphasized her, and the kids who guarded her, Callie Vogel, Heather Vivian and Kaitlyn O’Connell just chased her all over the gym,” he said. “You take someone who averages 23 and give her zero, you give yourself a pretty good chance.”

“When she did get the ball, we double-teamed her. We weren’t going to give her any free shots. It left other kids open and some of those kids took advantage of it, but we were more than happy to let them try to beat us.”

East Troy enjoyed a pair of huge statistical advantages – free throws and 3-point shooting.

The Trojans were 19-of-34 from the free-throw line compared to just 7-of-13 for the Cardinals.

“They play man (defense) and are really physical,” Brown said. “The refs called it. When you’re in zone most of the time like we are, you don’t into as much foul trouble.

“After a while, we just tried to keep beating it inside just to get to the free-throw line more than trying to score.”

The Trojans also made seven 3-pointerswhile Brodhead had just two for the night. Maddie Rosin had four treys for the Trojans, while Erin Rice knocked down three.

Three of those came at the end of the first half, as the Trojans made a trio of 3-pointers, followed by a layup, to quickly build a 10-point advantage.

“We had 11 points in four possessions, which is almost impossible,” Brown said.

Rice led the Trojans with 15 points and five rebounds, followed by Rosin with 12 points and Mackenzie Lindow with 11 points and four rebounds. Kayla Casper grabbed seven rebounds.

All 11 of Lindow’s points came at the free-throw line.

Brown said he’s not concerned about any possible letdown or overconfidence from his team coming off what could be considered a milestone win.

The Trojans are ready to just get back at it.

“My kids know that Clinton and Edgerton are really good,” Brown said. “One of the things this group does, is they just sort of move on. They move on from losses, they move on after wins.

“I think they do a pretty good job of just coming to work every day. They’re not overconfident by any means.”

 
 

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