The eighth grade Janesville Wildcats journeyed to Richmond School to take on the Rebels in an eighth grade basketball game on Monday, Dec. 5.
The game ended with a 36-33 winning score for the Wildcats, proving the teams to be fairly well matched throughout the competition.
Richmond started off the game in the lead with a basket shot by Grace Heimbigner after a mere seven seconds of game time.
With 7:23 on the clock, Janesville countered with a basket made by Ronnie Merrill.
After a rebound by Merrill, Wildcat Tristen Struthers made her first basket of the game.
Struthers didn’t stop there, however, as another four points were gained via basket at 6:22 and 5:40.
Richmond gained a point via free throw by Heimbigner, but Janesville was back at it with a basket sunk by Ashlyn Acernecht.
The Rebels began to get into their groove with a three-pointer shot by Autry Satica.
Wildcat Struthers scored a final basket before the first quarter was called with 12-6 on the board favoring Janesville.
Seventeen seconds into the second quarter resulted in a Janesville basket by Allie Magarrell.
With 6:28 on the clock, both teams lost their focus. With no one else on the alert, Janesville was able to throw in the ball to Merrill who scored a basket without missing a beat.
The sudden score hop woke up the Rebels and Satica landed another three-pointer with five minutes on the clock.
A Janesville timeout was called with 16-9 on the board in their favor.
Moments after the timeout was finished, Janesville bumped up their score with another two points via basket by Magarrell.
With 2:53 on the clock, Jordan Smith sunk a basket for the Rebels.
Struthers hit a basket with less than two minutes remaining of the half, and was soon followed by an opposing Rebel basket to cancel out the victory.
The half was called with 20-13 on the board, still favoring the Wildcats.
Richmond’s Lilly Delcarlo kicked off quarter three with a basket, but she was quickly followed by two Janesville baskets made by Magarrell and Struthers.
Satica scored two baskets for Richmond with 5:02 and 4:16 on the clock, but Janesville’s Struthers squeezed in a basket between Satica’s successes.
With 28-17 on the board, Richmond gained a new wind of motivation.
With three minutes on the clock, Satica dribbled down the court after a Janesville rebound. She then passed the ball to Heimbigner and was not disappointed as Heimbigner shot a perfect basket right under Janesville’s nose.
Within the next two minutes, Katie Marsh slipped in another four points for the Rebels via two baskets.
The final quarter of the game began with a 28-23 score on the board. Janesville continued in the lead.
Richmond boosted their chances even further with a basket by Satica at 7:10 and one by Heimbigner at 6:50, but Janesville’s Merrill quickly brought Janesville up with a successful free throw.
With 6:29 remaining of the final period, Richmond made their eight foul of the half, thus Janesville was awarded a free throw per additional foul. Ultimately, this was Richmond’s undoing.
Merrill gave another point to Janesville after a free throw; Struthers also gave two points to the Wildcats from free throws.
Merrill drove the nail in the Richmond coffin with a basket 2:24 into the quarter.
Heimbigner wasn’t ready to let her team give up, though, as she scored two baskets with 4:27 and 3:48 on the board.
Struthers made the last basket for Janesville with 2:08 remaining of the game.
Smith made the final basket overall with two minutes on the board.
With all girls exhausted and a game well played, the Wildcats left the gym with the win. The board shone 36-33.