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Evanston junior Dashae Shumate hit what proved to be the winning three-pointer and had an important block in the final minutes of Friday’s 41-37 win over Glenbrook South in the Central Suburbal League South opener for both teams in Glenview.
Shumate’s trey with 1:34 remaining put the Wildkits (6-0, 1-0) up 40-37 in a hard-fought but turnover-filled contest.
The Wildkits trailed 37-33 midway through the fourth quarter. But Shumate scored a basket, and then her missed free throw was rebounded by teammate Alecia Cooley, who tied the score with a put-back.
Shumate, Cooley and junior Seara Clayborn had 12 points apiece for the Wildkits, who opened the season by winning the Deerfield Thanksgiving Tournament. Cooley, a 6-foot-2 senior, had 15 rebounds.
For Shumate, the victory had special meaning because Glenbrook South had ended her 2011-12 season when it knocked Niles West, her former school, out of the IHSA Class 4A State Playoffs.
“(Glenbrook South) kicked us (Niles West) out of the playoffs last season. It was a big game for me,” she said. “It was a big game for Evanston because they had lost to GBS twice last season. It was a big deal.”
Glenbrook South (5-2, 0-1) employed a zone defense designed to limit Cooley’s touches down low. The Titans held Cooley to just four points through three quarters. However, the Evanston center scored eight in the final frame.
Both teams struggled to hold onto the ball. Glenbrook South, which has just one ballhandler, had 15 turnovers in the first half alone.
Titans coach Steve Weissenstein said it was just the first of what likely will be many grind-it-out games in the CSL South.
“I’m proud of the effort,” the coach said. “I thought we played extremely hard against a really good team. It kind of tells what kind of conference we’re going to have. Every game is going to be like this. Obviously (turnovers) were the key to the game, especially in the first half.”
Seniors Lindsey Oldshue, Molly McDonagh and Katie Jennings had 10 points apiece for the Titans.