Wilmot junior Riley Alexander, shown here against Westosha Central, contributed nine points in the Panthers defeat of host Delavan-Darien Friday (Photo courtesy of Nick Parisi).

Panthers win seven of last eight games

By Jason Arndt

Entering Friday’s Southern Lakes Conference match with host Delavan-Darien, the Wilmot Union High School girls basketball team knew what was on the line, sole possession of second place in the SLC.

The Panthers, who are one game behind first place Union Grove, held its position in the SLC with a 57-43 defeat of the Comets.

Senior Morgan Zenon, in her third game back from an ankle injury, led all Panther scorers with 14 points.

According to Zenon, whose team carried a 31-15 edge into halftime, she attributes the win to a balanced offensive attack.

“We are a well rounded team and we knew that we had to stay focused in order to keep our spot secure at second place in conference,” said Zenon, a 5-foot-11 forward.

The well-rounded attack included contributions from low post teammate Ashley Lesko, a 5-10 senior who chipped in nine points, which equaled junior guard Riley Alexander’s performance on Friday.

Senior Becca Bell, meanwhile, added reinforcements in the paint, where she pitched in eight points.

The Panthers win, which moves them to 10-5 overall and 7-1 in the SLC, comes in spite of allowing a game-high 21 points from Comets senior Jaida Speth.

“She’s an aggressive player and we knew that she was the player that we had to focus on and I felt we took care of that as a team,” Zenon said.

Aside from Speth’s 21 point performance, the Panthers defense held the rest of the Comets to single digits.

With the win, the Panthers extended its win streak to six games, including the Jan. 9 victory against Lake Geneva Badger without Zenon.

The team’s post players, however, stepped in to shoulder the load in Zenon’s absence, including the 5-11 Bell and Lesko.

In the Jan. 9 victory, Bell tallied 14 points and collected 13 rebounds for her first career double-double, and Lesko snagged eight rebounds while knocking in 13 points.

The efforts, according to Zenon, are indicative of the team’s dedication.

“We know what needs to be done and when it needs to be done in an absence of a key player to secure a win,” said Zenon.

Junior Haley Lamberson, who made two 3-pointers, and sophomore Kenzi Ketterhagen each contributed six points for the Panthers.

Earlier results
Wilmot 72, Big Foot 59
The Lady Panthers produced a collective effort to defeat visiting Walworth Big Foot 72-59 on Jan. 13.

Wilmot, which had five players notch double figures in scoring, received a team-leading 14 points from both Lesko and Riley Alexander.

Additionally, the Panthers had three players notch 11 points, sophomore Julia Hickey, junior Karoline Klahs and Zenon.

For Big Foot, which is second in the Rock Valley Conference, Reagan Courier scored a game-high 19 points.

While the Panthers jumped to 9-5 overall, the Chiefs dropped to 8-5.

Wilmot 55, Elkhorn 42
In a Southern Lakes Conference contest, the Lady Panthers edged host Elkhorn 55-42, thanks to a team-leading 12 points from Alexander.

Alexander, who scored nine points from the arc, went 1 for 2 at the free throw line.
Zenon, in her first game back from an injury, added 11 points.

Payton Christensen led the Elks with 15 points.

With the Lady Panthers’ win, they maintained sole possession of second place in the SLC at 6-1, one game behind undefeated Union Grove.

Wilmot 72, Badger 60
Bell notched her first career double-double performance, courtesy of 14 points and 13 rebounds, to help the Lady Panthers defeat host Lake Geneva Badger 72-
60 on Jan. 9.

Along with Bell, the Lady Panthers had other contributions in low post, where Lesko collected eight total rebounds and scored 13 points.

Sophomore Karina Leber bolstered Wilmot’s presence in the paint, picking up eight rebounds, and added four points.

In the backcourt, where the Lady Panthers had two guards score in double figures, Hickey led with 13 points and went 4 for 5 from the arc.

Junior Haley Lamberson picked up 10 points for Wilmot.


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