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Bolingbrook's Amarah Coleman (10) shoots the ball during Tuesday night's game between Lincoln-Way East and Bolingbrook high schools. | Paul Bergstrom ~ For Sun-Times Media
Players come and go, but one thing remains constant at Bolingbrook. The Raiders play defense.
Junior guard Aysia Bugg scored 22 points on six three-pointers, 5-10 junior Amarah Coleman added 17 points and Bolingbrook limited Lincoln-Way East to just two field goals en route to a 66-17 victory in the Southwest Suburban Blue division Tuesday at Bolingbrook.
“I think he (Bolingbrook coach Anthony Smith) was pleased with us today,” Bugg said. “We really worked on defense and we went over what they were going to do and really worked on how to counter it. I think we really did well. We can do better, of course, but I think he was pretty happy.”
A conventional three-point play by Kamari Jordan with three-tenths of a second left in the first quarter and three Bugg three-pointers were part of an 15-2 run that allowed No. 8 Bolingbrook (13-4, 7-0) to build a 25-8 lead midway through the second quarter.
Another Bugg three-pointer extended the lead to 50-12 with 4:33 remaining in the third quarter, and Bolingbrook’s defense did the rest.
“We got banged up,” Lincoln-Way East coach Jim Martin said. “They play such tenacious defense. That’s their program. They come after you. Tony’s intense, they’re intense. They’re going to come after you. They always do. Girls diving on the floor for loose balls, banging heads.”
Dana O’Grady led Lincoln-Way East (14-2, 6-1) with six points and Meaghan McMahon added five, all on free throws.
“It was 10-6 and I thought we were doing a good job,” Martin said. “We had a turnover at the end of the first quarter and they got some momentum. Then we just went into a shell. They do that to you.”
Bolingbrook’s Kennedy Cattenhead, the lone veteran of last year’s supersectional runner-up, added eight points as she continues to work her way back into shape after missing most of the season with an injury.
But Bugg was the story on offense for the new-look Raiders.
“Whatever is there is what I take,” Bugg said. “Typically, I shoot. But I drive when I can. I’m trying to do both. I’m trying to incorporate the dribble-drive, but yeah, I’m a shooter.”
Bolingbrook also got big contributions from junior forwards Destiny Harris and Lexi Smith.
“It’s really a team effort,” Bugg said. “We can’t rely on any one person. One night, I can be off and the next night somebody else can be on. We rely on each other so much. I think that’s why we’re getting to be so close and working so much better.
“At the beginning of the season, I think it was a little bumpy,” she added. “But now we’re starting to really gel and people are going to see a team to be reckoned with.”