MATTOON -- The Lady Wave fell to the Effingham Hearts on their home court Thursday evening, making this their fifth loss of the season. The Hearts dominated the court to clinch a 70-34 blowout over Mattoon.
Lady Wave junior Flannery Sanders started the game on the right track with a two pointer, which was their only lead of the entire game. The home team’s lead didn’t last long, as the Hearts offense went on a 12-point run.
From there, the Hearts controlled the game with aggressive steals and a steady offense. With only three minutes left in the first quarter, Mattoon junior Morgan Otto stopped the Hearts’ run briefly with a 2-pointer, making the score 15-4.
The Hearts jumped back with a 3-pointer followed by a 2-pointer only seconds later. This offensive trend continued in the first quarter, as the Hearts headed into the second quarter ahead 17-4.
Mattoon put some points on the board once the second quarter play began, after senior Bella Coffey sunk two free throws in the basket. A stronger Green Wave offense was on the court in the second allowing them to gain some ground against the Hearts by breaking into the double digits.
After the Hearts gained a 20-point lead with 2 minutes until halftime, the Lady Green Wave responded with two consecutive 2-pointers by junior Grace McDowell and Coffey to make the score 29-13. With just a few seconds left in the half, the Hearts came through with a 3-pointer putting them confidently ahead 32-13.
The Green Wave scored more points in the second half, adding 21 points to the board to fall to the Hearts 70-34.
Mattoon head coach Amanda Aydt was proud of her team’s effort despite the tough loss. “I thought out kids played hard,” Aydt said. “Proud of the effort, fought to the end.”
Aydt commented on Effingham’s strong performance against her 2-5 team. “Effingham is a great team,” Aydt said. “We’ll learn from this, to get better every day.”
Senior Avery Risinger said the team still has time to improve since it’s early season basketball. “It’s still November, we have time to build,” Risinger said. “When we start getting down like that, it’s time to start looking at fundamentals so we can improve.”
The Lady Green Wave move on to their next game of the season on Saturday, hosting Marshall with a 1:30 p.m. tipoff.