Woodridge girls basketball routs Field to open MAC play

Steve Batko
Correspondent

It’s always nice to win your first game in a new league.

For Woodridge girls basketball head coach Chris Nauer, he was able to use his bench early and often in an easy 62-34 win at Field.

Forcing 28 turnovers, Woodridge cruised to a victory in its inaugural game in the Metro Athletic Conference on the road Dec. 2.

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No stranger to Woodridge, Field had a winning mark of 8-6 last winter in the PTC Metro.

However, the Falcons lost a huge scorer in wing Maria Sziva to graduation along with the Falcon’s other top two scorers in sharpshooter Buzz Kline and guard Aaliyah Ruppel.

The Bulldogs took advantage of the inexperience with an aggressive defense that held Field to just 14 buckets and led Woodridge to some easy transition baskets.

Nauer effectively used a full-court press at times and the half-court man defense was sound.

A deep 3-pointer by senior guard Layla Foster at the 3:28 mark of the first period vaulted Woodridge to a 13-0 lead to jump start the contest.

Woodridge (2-0 overall) never looked back and featured balanced scoring.

“We talked in the pre-game that we wanted every girl to contribute and the girls executed that game plan,” explained Nauer.

Senior forward Olivia Woods scored 10 of her 12 team-high points for the Bulldogs in a lopsided 37-17 first half.

Leah Mencer popped in 11 points and the sophomore guard had three steals.

Sparking the Bulldogs was Foster (eight points, four assists and three thefts), junior wing Anna Rorrer (six points, 11 total rebounds, four offensive boards and one blocked shot), junior forward Emma Stekelenburg (eight points, four steals, and two blocks), and senior guard Bella Owen (seven first half points, three feeds, two steals).

Rorrer, a long and lively 5-foot-8 athlete on both ends of the court, and the 5-10 Stekelenburg were very active on the glass and on defense.

“Anna and Emma, along with junior Kendal Gregory are all getting big varsity minutes this year,” stressed Nauer. “They have worked hard in the off season.”

“I thought that Rorrer did a really nice job leading us with 11 rebounds and she did a nice job on the glass,” he added. “She is very athletic and gets her hand on the basketball a lot.”

Sophomore Corrine Betts hit 3-of-4 free throws and had a block off the Bulldog bench.

The Bulldogs play a league clash at Ravenna Dec. 5 and host league foe Coventry on Senior Night Dec. 9. Both games tip off at 7 p.m.

“We moved up our Senior Night to make sure it happens because Olivia, Layla, and Bella have all had a heck of a career and have contributed to the program,” disclosed Nauer.

Pacing the Falcons (0-3) was forward Haley Hopkins, who had a game-high 16 points.

Field’s all-time rebound leader Kaitlyn Feller, a 5-11 post, scored 13 points and hauled down 14 rebounds.