DEWITT — Central DeWitt sophomore EmmaGrace Hartman said the Sabers’ schedule isn’t going to get any easier.
On Tuesday night, the Sabers girls basketball team showed they’re ready.
“You have to match the energy, if not have more than the other team,” Hartman said. “We’re playing better competition so we definitely need to be ready for each game.”
The Class 4A No. 4-ranked Sabers defeated No. 5-ranked North Scott 51-36 Tuesday, staying undefeated at 7-0 while giving the Lancers their first loss (5-1) of the season.
Central DeWitt trailed 22-21 at halftime, but outscored North Scott 30-14 in the second half.
“We’ve been working on making sure that this is a team game,” Sabers coach Chad Specht said. “The kids know it, we practice it, we work on it, but then it comes to that point where they’ve got to have confidence and faith in one another. Once that happens, I think good things will happen.”
The Sabers opened the third quarter with a 9-3 run and led 36-28 by the end of the quarter.
North Scott’s Samantha Scott opened the fourth quarter with back-to-back 3-pointers, forcing a Sabers timeout.
Central DeWitt responded with layups from juniors Allison Meadows and Taylor Veach to make it 40-34.
After two Lancers free throws, Veach scored again on an assist from senior Talbot Kinney to keep the Sabers’ lead at six points.
“They just have a really good chemistry,” Specht said.
North Scott was called for an over and back on the next possession, Kinney hit Hartman for a layup inside and the Sabers made free throws to win the game.
“It was more about having confidence in each other and having more confidence in yourself — that gives other people a lot more confidence in you,” Hartman said. “And defense. Defense wins most of our games for us and if we have a turnover on offense, then we get back on defense and get a stop right away.”
Sabers senior Grace Pierce led Central DeWitt with 15 points, Hartman had 11 and Veach added 10.
“We’re taking one day at a time,” Specht said. “That’s all we can control is our effort, our attitude and I’m just so happy for them because they’ve worked their butts off so hard up to this point. One day at time, they’re starting to see good results out of that.”