ELNORA — It wasn’t pretty, but the North Daviess girls basketball team won its seventh game in a row.
The Class A No. 9 Cougars (15-2, 6-0 Southwestern Indiana) defeated Bloomfield (9-8, 4-3) 45-26 Tuesday evening at the Cougar Den behind a combined 40 points from Sabra Smith, Meghan Knepp and Brooke Moore.
Neither team looked ready to play in the game’s opening minutes, as both teams combined for just nine points in the first six minutes of play. Bloomfield seemed to find some momentum as Madison Toon and Alicia Hasler closed the first quarter with back-to-back baskets to give the Cardinals a 9-5 lead.
“We had shots, we just didn’t make them and those are shots we normally make,” said North Daviess coach Ron Knepp. “The kids just battled through and we had our role players step up and make big shots in that first quarter and that helped us keep us close and in striking distance.”
The Cougars found whatever they were lacking in the first quarter and dominated the second eight minutes. The Cougars scored the first 11 points of the quarter behind a 3-pointer from Meghan Knepp, two baskets from Sabra Smith and a layup from Brooke Moore. A Cheyenne Wikle basket cut the North Daviess lead to 16-11 and gave the Cardinals their first points of the quarter with 3:25 to play before halftime. North Daviess close the quarter on a 7-2 run on a three-point play from Moore and baskets from Smith and Knepp to give North Daviess a 23-13 halftime lead.
Coming out of halftime, the first two minutes of the third quarter were reminiscent of the beginning of the game. Hasler split two free throws at the 5:56 mark to cut the North Daviess lead to 23-14. After a North Daviess timeout, Knepp connected on a 3-pointer and then the senior guard split two free throws to push the lead to 27-14.