Let’s just call it Senior Night.
When Lone Tree’s girls basketball team hosted Hillcrest Academy on Tuesday night, the game showcased the dominating skills of Lone Tree senior forward Casey Chown and Hillcrest senior Esther Hughes.
Both scored double-doubles.
Chown, battling double-teamed defensive pressure in the paint, scored a season-high 23 points in the Lions’ 52-40 victory.
Hughes led the Ravens with 17 points and a game-high 12 rebounds.
Chown had 11 rebounds for the Lions, scoring a double-double for the second time in her last three games, both Lone Tree wins. She has scored 43 points in her last two games, and has been an important piece for the Lions’ inside game, both offensively and defensively.
“Casey – they all know what her role is on this team,” said Lions head coach Ryan Shelman. “The girls looks up to her. She’s a four-year varsity forward.”
But in the midst of all that attention on Chown inside, Hillcrest (1-9) didn’t let the Lions (5-7) off easily due to Hughes and the 3-point shooting of freshman Malia Yoder. Yoder hit a game-high four 3-pointers and scored a career-high 13 points.
The Ravens (1-9) hit a season high in points scored in a Southeast Iowa Super Conference game.
A 3-pointer by Yoder gave Hillcrest a two-point lead in the final minute of the opening quarter. The Ravens pulled to within nine points of the Lions three times in the final quarter.
“Mitch (Drey, Hillcrest head coach) is doing a nice job with that team,” Shelman said.
After Yoder’s 3-pointer gave the Ravens a 9-7 lead, Chown answered with a basket off an offensive rebound for a 9-9 tie to end the first quarter. The Lions never trailed after that. Chown’s basket began a 18-3 Lone Tree run that was interrupted only by another Yoder 3-pointer. Chown scored 12 points in the first half as the Lions opened up a 31-21 lead.
Lone Tree held Hillcrest to just six points in the third quarter, but the Lions did not shake off the Ravens until the final minute of the game on two free throws by Chown and one by Avery Lisk. A basket off an offensive rebound by Yoder and a pair of free throws by Yoder cut Lone Tree’s lead to 47-38 with about two minutes left. But Hughes scored the only Hillcrest basket the rest of the game.
Riley Krueger added 8 points for Lone Tree. Lisk added 5 points and 4 steals. Rylee Shield had 5 points and 6 rebounds.
Hillcrest hosts Winfield-Mt. Union at 6 p.m. Friday; Lone Tree is at Pekin on Friday.
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