FISHERS, Ind. — Lawrence North proved just how well it can play. A balanced attack by the Class 4A No. 5 Wildcats was too much for 4A No. 7 Hamilton Southeastern to handle.
The Wildcats went on a 12-4 run in the fourth quarter on their way to a 52-48 win over the Royals on Tuesday night.
Beyond handing Hamilton Southeastern just its third loss of the season, the Wildcats proved just how tough they can be.
But what makes the Wildcats so dangerous, Lawrence North coach Chris Griffin said, are their depth and defense — things that are hard for any opponent to overcome.
“They’re all buying in defensively and they’re all playing unselfishly,” Griffin said. “If we can continue to do that, I think the sky’s the limit because I don’t see teams around the state with the depth that I’m fortunate to have.”
That defensive commitment is what stopped the Royals. They held Hamilton Southeastern’s Taya Reimer to just eight points in the second half.
She finished with a game-high 22 points.
“We just came out and fought,” said Lawrence North’s Mikale Rogers, who led the Wildcats with 18 points and 11 rebounds. “It’s what we do all the time.”
Reimer scored 12 points in the first quarter to give the Royals a 14-8 lead, including all seven points in a 7-2 run that gave the Royals an edge.
But the Wildcats responded. They came back and took a 27-26 lead on a 3-pointer just before the buzzer by Jordan Hankins, who scored 12 points.
The win shed some light on how dangerous the Wildcats can be.
“They’re fast and they’re long,” Hamilton Southeastern coach Chris Huppenthal said. “That’s going to make anybody dangerous.”
Lawrence North’s speed and length forced the Royals into 21 turnovers.
“I think it proves that we’re a tough team,” Destiny Washington said. “We don’t back down, even though we get down. We have a great team behind us. We like to fight back.”
The Wildcats made eight free throws in the fourth quarter to stay just a step ahead of the Royals, who missed six shots in the final period. Rogers said it was a statement on what the Wildcats can do.
“In a way it is,” Rogers said. “Just to let others know what we’re made of and that we can win even when we’re down. We’re able to beat any team.”