Glenbard South clinches one last MSC championship

Glenbard South coach Morgan Kasperek knows she has a special senior class on her girls basketball team.

"They pretty much have broken or will break every record at Glenbard South," Kasperek said. "People didn't expect a lot from them when they were young, and they've pushed themselves beyond what I think everyone thought. They're going to make a name and they're going to leave a legacy in this program. They've got a lot still to do, but there's a lot of things that these guys can do."

After a rough start on senior night, the Raiders came from behind Tuesday in the second half to win in a rout, defeating Riverside-Brookfield 48-28 to clinch the Metro Suburban Conference Blue Division championship outright.

"It feels great," said Raiders guard Mady Carli, honored before the game with fellow seniors Grace Buckley, Sarah Cohen and Ally Daca. "We've been working hard for it, so it was good."

The Raiders (22-3, 11-0), ranked fifth in Class 3A by the Associated Press, can finish an undefeated run through the league with a win Friday against Fenton. It's the Raiders' last year in the MSC before they leave for the Upstate Eight, and Glenbard South has won the league championship each of the seniors' four seasons.

"It's a good way to go out," Kasperek said.

It wasn't a good start for the Raiders, who fell behind 8-2 after one quarter. Maybe it was the 2-3 zone Riverside-Brookfield (20-7, 8-2) employed, maybe it was the effects of senior night.

"It's probably a combination of both," Kasperek said. "Senior night is never an easy night to play, especially with this group that's meant so much to our program and will hopefully continue for a little while here. I thought R-B came out super intense and they were very physical with us and then we figured out how to go against it in the second half and obviously played a lot better."

"We were nervous," Carli added. "They're a good team. We knew that coming into it. The pressure got to us a little, and then we adjusted."

By halftime the Raiders had closed the gap to 19-17.

"I thought our defense was fine," said Riverside-Brookfield coach Dallas Till. "I know they're a much better team than we are. We did what we could to limit their shots. I thought we had a good scheme."

Glenbard South finally tied the Bulldogs with 2:56 to play in the third quarter on a pair of free throws by junior Maggie Bair. Another pair of Bair free throws at 1:57 gave the Raiders the lead for good at 27-25, and they outscored Riverside-Brookfield 21-3 over the final 10 minutes of play.

"We started moving the ball around and stuff, driving, not just standing there," Carli said. "I think we were more confident in our shots, too, as the game went on."

Carli looked very confident in her shot. She scored 14 of her 17 points in the second half, converting five 3-pointers on the night. Bair added 17 points, 12 rebounds and 4 steals, Daca scored 8 points and Cohen dished 7 assists.

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