Riverside-Brookfield too much for Glenbard East

Glenbard East's girls basketball team ran into a hot team when it faced off against its holiday tournament host Riverside-Brookfield in the semifinals on Saturday.

The Rams were held to just 5 points in the first half after an 18-point first quarter helped the Bulldogs roll to a 42-24 victory.

The Bulldogs shut down the post play of Glenbard East thanks to 6-foot-7 sophomore center Dana Rettke and did most of their damage down low as well with senior forward Janae Dabney putting up 17 points.

"What can I say? Riverside-Brookfield's a great ballclub," said Rams coach Don Finnie. "But my kids came out of the second half and played a lot harder in the first half. I was very pleased with them.

"Of course when you have height like that you can pressure like crazy on the outside in the perimeter. It's a different type of ballgame and we haven't seen a girl that tall this year or ever really."

The Bulldogs started quickly in the first half.

Though she didn't make a big impact offensively, Rettke's mere presence under the basket had Glenbard East rethinking the game plan and settling for outside shots, though Riverside-Brookfield's guards would step out on them. Rettke had 4 points and 4 blocks in the first half.

Dabney did have the offensive touch, but it came from doing the dirty work, getting the offensive rebounds, and getting to the line to convert. The senior captain had 12 of her 17 points in the first half, and she went 8 of 11 from the free-throw line to get her team to a 24-5 halftime lead.

"Janae's a stalwart down there," said Bulldogs coach Dallas Till. "She's relentless on the boards offensively and defensively, and she's tough to deal with down there just because of her energy. She reminds me a lot of like a Dennis Rodman type. She's just very active on the boards."

The Rams found a bit of success in the second half thanks to the efforts of Allison Hanson, who put up a team-high 9 points and 5 blocks in the game.

Glenbard East put up 19 points in the second half, but Till's Bulldogs had executed the game plan to perfection to earn a spot in the finals.

"We knew that (Brittany Paganucci) was their shooter," Till said. "We knew some girls were more of drive-first type players, like (Brasia Solid), who is a very good player, but she didn't really want to shoot from the perimeter so we kind of told them to stay off."

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