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West Aurora's Alexis Wiggins struggles get rid of Naperville Central defender Cierra Stanciel on Thursday, December 6, 2012 at Naperville Central High School. | Terence Guider-Shaw~For Sun-Times Media
When the going got tough for Naperville Central on Thursday, Jamie Cuny got going.
After a feisty West Aurora team got to within four points early in the third quarter against the taller and more experienced Naperville Central, Cuny took charge and scored 11 of her game-high 20 points in that period to lead the Redhawks to a 60-52 win over the visiting Blackhawks.
The three-point shot was the Redhawks’ friend as Cuny hit four and reserve guard Emily Kraft, who scored a season-high 17 points on the night, connected on three from beyond the arc.
“We weren’t playing our normal game in the first half,” said Cuny, who also corralled eight rebounds. “We knew we had to come out and set the tone in the first two minutes of the second half. My teammates were finding me, and I was hitting them.”
“I liked the way we played as a team,” Naperville Central coach Andy Nussbaum said. “Jamie had the hot hand and we found her. And Emily scored more than she has in all our other games combined. We knew she could shoot, but tonight proves that she gives us another weapon.”
The Redhawks (8-1,1-1) entered the final quarter with a double-digit lead as the Blackhawks (4-5, 0-3) kept battling, cutting the deficit to five late in the game.
“It was a physical game by both teams,” Nussbaum said. “But I liked the way we responded to their physicality. We shot the ball well. We have different people to pick the team up in every game. The kids who hit double-figures tonight weren’t the same ones who did it on Tuesday against Wheaton South.”
Shannon Ryan added 12 points and Victoria Trowbridge pulled down a dozen boards for the Redhawks.
Abriya Zeitz with 12 points and nine rebounds and Elizabeth Skaggs with 10 points and 14 rebounds were the big guns for the Blackhawks.”
“Skaggs is in there every night battling against bigger people,” West Aurora coach Connie Siljendahl said. “And we got good games from freshman Carley Frauenhoff and sophomore post player Kyler Robinson off the bench. We need some leaders to step up and until we get that, we won’t win these games.”
Siljendahl liked the way her team moved the ball.
“When we did that we were successful,” she said. “But we have to work on defense and get up on their shooters. Naperville Central is a very good team.”