By Kevin Cunningham


The Delavan-Darien High School girls basketball team entered last week with a 1-8 overall record and two games on its schedule. Both were on the road, and the Comets couldn’t overcome the road environment, dropping both contests.

First, on Jan. 6, the team travelled to Burlington to face the Demons. Burlington owned the first half of the game, not because of its offense, but because of its defense. At halftime, the Comets trailed 19-3.

“It’s just not having a guard being able to get us into the offense,” Comet head coach Joe Lopez said. “That’s just the truth. Whether they’re pressing us and we’re struggling to move the ball across half court … that would be the big problem. Against Burlington, we scored three points in the half because we couldn’t get it across half court.

“Couple things – our turnover ratio at this point is at 37 percent, which means 37 percent of our possessions are ending in a turnover. It’s a little bit of ball-handling, but it’s mostly passing. We’re just not being strong with the ball.”

Against Burlington, the Comets had six assists compared to its 29 turnovers. The second half played out fairly evenly, but the Demons came out victorious, winning 45-27. The loss vaulted Delavan-Darien to its next road game, which was played the next day against Monroe.

Monroe entered with an 8-1 record on the season and its success showed against the Comets, as Delavan-Darien lost 70-32. Monroe jumped out to a 42-18 lead to start the game and the Comets had four girls score in the game. Only Kenna Timmerman scored more than nine, with 15.

“They’re not only a good team, but they have probably one of the top sophomores in the state,” Lopez said. “She’s phenomenal. I believe she’s already received three offers. They’re a great team.”

Lopez was referring to Sydney Hilliard who scored 25 points against the Comets, and has received four Division 1 offers to this point in her young career – from Wisconsin, Marquette, Green Bay and South Dakota State.

With the loss, Delavan-Darien is now 1-10 overall on the season, but its next game will be against Elkhorn – the lone team the Comets have beaten this year. Elkhorn at this point is 0-11, but back when the teams met Dec. 2, it was a home game for the Comets.

This time around, it was a road game Tuesday.

“They kind of have the same issues we do,” Lopez said. “Have a hard time shooting the basketball, and, that’s one other problem we have is our field goal percentage. We’re not patient in our offense. We’re hurried in our offense. When we’re setting screens, we have to be strong with the ball. We have to catch the ball, and if they’re open, we have to look for our shot.

“You have to be strong with the ball because you’re waiting for the screens to happen. And, if you catch the ball and just pass it, you’re not giving the screens a chance to work. So, we tend to get into too big of a hurry, and we’re still working hard on it to get rhythm in our offense. Once we get that rhythm, that will help a lot. That’s something we had last year that we haven’t achieved this year.”

The Comets’ next home game is slated to start at 6 p.m. Friday against Westosha Central.



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