GALESBURG — Evan Massey called three timeouts in a span of 3 minutes, 32 seconds during the second quarter Saturday.
The Galesburg High School girls basketball team finally got its coach’s message after the last one.
“Coach Massey said we didn’t play like we were wanting to win,” Silver Streaks forward Sabrina Clay said. “We wanted to prove him wrong.”
They did just that, turning a six-point deficit into a six-point halftime lead en route to a 42-29 victory over Park Ridge Maine South at John Thiel Gymnasium.
Trailing 17-11 midway through the second, Galesburg closed the half on a 12-0 run and never trailed the rest of the way for its third straight win and fourth in five games.
“We weren’t doing what we were practicing,” senior guard Haley Kelso said of the Streaks’ play before the second-quarter surge. “We were making passes that we’ve never made in practice before.”
Then Galesburg flipped a switch.
Sophomore forward Shayli Florine opened the run with back-to-back layups, and Kelso followed with consecutive 3-pointers. A pair of free throws from Kailyn Boydstun gave the Streaks a 23-17 lead going into the locker room.
“Until that point, we were just backing down offensively,” Massey said. “But the second half of the second quarter and first half of the third quarter, I thought we did a good job of being strong with the ball.”
The Hawks (6-5) opened the third with a 3-pointer but never got closer. Maine South, a 27-win team a season ago, shot 7 of 46 from the floor and made only 1 of 28 shots inside the arc. Starting center Hailey Schoneman pulled in a team-leading 10 rebounds but finished with two points on 0-for-10 shooting.
“We’ve never gone 1 for 28 inside the arc before,” Hawks coach Mark Smith said. “We lost 80 percent of our scoring from last year, and we’re still trying to find someone who’ll step up and provide some offense. We’ve come down here and played a lot better before. We need to learn how to play better on the road.”
The Streaks shot 16 for 41 from the floor, with Kelso (4 of 12 3s) and Florine (5 of 8 from the field) leading the way with 12 points apiece. Clay added a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds
“Shayli gets all the points,” Massey said, “but our perimeter players did a really nice job of getting the ball inside when we had opportunities.”
Now back at .500, Galesburg has 11 days off before opening play Dec. 26 in the Mattoon Holiday Tournament.
“We lost two or three games that we felt like we really should’ve won,” Massey said, “but give credit to the girls because they didn’t panic and kept working.”
A different outcome Saturday, Kelso said, would’ve left the Streaks with a sour taste heading into the holidays.
“That,” she said, “would’ve been really depressing.”
The Galesburg High School sophomore girls basketball team fell to Maine South 48-43.
The Silver Streaks were down 22-21 at the intermission but saw the gap widen to three with a 10-8 third quarter. Galesburg was outscored 16-14 in the fourth quarter.
Kylee Townsell led the Streaks with 12 points and Kaylah Townsell added 10.