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Collinsville girls run into solid competition at Nashville Tourney

by Mark Jurgena

COLLINSVILLE — When a state championship team from the previous year has some of their best players back, including a Division I recruit, it doesn’t matter what classification they are in.

Defending Class 1A state champion Okawville took control of the game early, led by 18 points at halftime and cruised to a 59-31 opening round win over Collinsville.

“Okawville is an incredible team with 11-12 girls that can all execute their individual roles,” said Collinsville coach Colin Moore. “They will be tough to beat for anyone and really showed some of our girls some things we can improve on.”

The Rockets, in their first game of the season, forced 10 Kahok turnovers in the opening half while shooting a blistering 67 percent on 14-for-21 shooting from the floor.

But it was their level of execution of all the details of the game that Moore believes his team will learn from.

“We talked about buying in and doing all the little things right,” said Moore. “All the things that go unnoticed in the scorebook. We have to get better at attacking loose ball rebounds and diving on the floor for loose balls. They also set hard screens and nothing is easy. It showed us that we need to toughen up. It is things that we preach in practice but the girls had an in-game learning experience and realized what it really takes to play at the next level.”

Talesha Gilmore played exceptionally well for the Kahoks hitting 7-of-8 shots both from the floor and at the free throw line to finish with 16 points. She also paced the team with five rebounds.

“Talesha showed everyone in the gym the type of player she has become,” said Moore. “We talked about how she needs to become a bit more selfish at times and how all teams are going to try and stop her. Our guards have to do a better job and be committed to getting her the ball. Talesha worked hard and is quickly earning the respect from our opponents and other teams’ fans that she deserves. She is off to a great start. Her ability to talk with coaches about what she sees on the court has greatly improved.”

Karly VanDyke had six points while Ella Guerrero had five. Carsyn Moad had three assists. Addison Muniz had two steals for CHS.

MTV game

The Mt. Vernon Rams just pulled away from the Kahoks in game two of the tournament on Nov. 21 and recorded a 54-34 running clock victory.

Collinsville fell behind 18-9 after one period and 34-17 at the half. After three, MTV held a lead of 52-21.
Gilmore led the Kahoks in scoring with 14 points and grabbed five rebounds. Guerrero had eight points including a pair of threes.

VanDyke led CHS with six rebounds.

Fr. McG win

In their third contest, the Kahoks defeated the JV team from Father McGivney 59-37.

Collinsville forced 14 turnovers during the opening half but spent several minutes struggling to score and found themselves down 10-6 with 2:08 to play in the first quarter.

But CHS got a three from Lilly Carlisle at the 1:47 mark of the first. After a pair of Griffin free throws, VanDyke buried a three to tie the game and the Kahoks never looked back.

Gilmore hit a pair of free throws and Carlisle drilled a three at the buzzer to give the Kahoks a 17-14 lead.
The 11-4 run finished with Gurrero’s second three of the evening.

CHS finished the half with an 11-0 run.

Moad drilled a pair of threes and Gilmore hit a conventional three-point play as well as a layup and CHS led 31-18 at the half.

Collinsville put the game away with a 14-2 run to begin the second half.

Guerrero had eight points during the spree while Gilmore had four and Katie Bardwell added two to give CHS a commanding 25-point lead.

For the game, Gilmore had 21 points, seven rebounds and five steals.

Guerrero had 19 points on 5-of-8 shooting from three.

Moad had six assists while VanDyke had five.

Mascoutah loss
They had the game within their grasp but couldn’t hold on In the final game of the tourney, Collinsville dropped the fifth-place contest to Mascoutah 50-46.

The Kahoks fought all half to overcome a double-digit deficit. Twice they got within one point then finally took the lead 44-43 thanks to a pair of free throws by Carlisle at the 3:37 mark of the fourth quarter.

After several stops by both teams, Gilmore increased the Kahok advantage to 46-43 with a bucket at the 1:48 mark. However, Mascoutah got a three from Riley Fazenbaker to tie it at 46-all with 1:19 to go.

After the Indians got a stop, Tatum Maschhoff drilled a game-clinching three from the left wing and Fazenbaker added a free throw late to finish the scoring.

Gilmore led the Kahoks with 17 points and nine rebounds while VanDyke had eight boards.
Karley Call had nine points thanks to three makes from beyond the arc.

Tourney notes

Nashville ran their record to 4-0 after burying Okawville 55-28 for the championship.

Mt. Vernon beat Freeburg 72-51 for third place.

Upcoming Schedule

Collinsville takes their 3-3 record into their SWC opener tonight at Belleville East.

They return to action on Tuesday at home against Belleville West and then next Thursday against East St. Louis.

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