2/25 – Huntley girls basketball comes up short in sectional semi-final


Ryan Sroka

Dundee Crown parents fill the visitor side bleachers with the visiting student section dressed in the famous “hoedown” outfits. The Huntley side is filled almost to the max with Huntley parents and a student section covered in blackout gear. There are roars of excitement for the Sectional semi-final game to start. Music is blaring as both teams take the floor for warm ups. 

Our Huntley Red Raiders (20-12) matchup against FVC champion in Dundee Crown (24-6). This is the third contest between the two teams this season, with Dundee Crown edging the Raiders two times in the regular season already. However, that means nothing now. Loser goes home and the winner moves on to play against Barrington for the sectional title. 

The game begins with Huntley winning the tip. Both teams came out ready defensively with a couple stops in a row. The first basket was by Kamsi Nwogu on an offensive rebound to put the raiders on the board first. The first quarter ends with a lay up at the buzzer by Raquel Radermacher. The Chargers lead 11-9. 

The game was very physical and had a up-beat tempo  since both teams were pressing full court. Dundee Crown would occasionally switch defenses from man to man to a 1-2-2 zone with trapping, so it created some turnovers. Since both teams were playing up tempo there were many fouls and stoppages of play with jump balls. 

The Dundee crown Chargers got an open lay up as the buzzer sounds to take a 27-19 lead over Huntley at the half. Crenshaw on DC has 8 points from posting up in the paint. Radermacher leads the raiders with 8 points. 

“The main talk at the half was just basically being mentally stronger and taking care of the ball during pressure…We needed to be hyper aware of shooters,” Senior Sydney Novak said

Out of the half the Raiders went on a run to get themselves back in the game 29-26. The Raiders were doing a good job of getting stops on defense and feeding the ball inside to Nwogu and Freshman Carley Faulkner to draw some fouls and drill the free throws. 

Sydney Novak’s putback gave the Raiders two points as the buzzer sounds. The third quarter ends with Huntley trailing 35-28. 

With 50 seconds to play the Raiders managed to cut the Chargers lead from 47-39 at one point to 47-42. Unfortunately, that was as close as it would get. The Red Raiders lost a heartbreaker 49-42. Radermacher led Huntley with 14 and Nwogu added 12 points. 

When asking about the girl’s overall season, there was some optimism in Novak’s answer. 

“I was very proud of our season overall, I think we did a really good job compared to years before…When I was a sophomore we were terrible and for us to get back to the winning culture of winning a regional means a lot,” Novak said.