JOLIET – Coaches are always happy when they can look at the stat sheet and see good distribution of scoring throughout the lineup.
That’s just what Joliet Junior College women’s basketball coach Shaun Sanderson saw from his Wolves when they played a young Trinity Christian College team on Monday.
After the teams played to a 36-all tie in the first half, JJC used runs to start the third and fourth quarters, and that helped the Wolves to a 79-70 victory over the Trolls at the Event Center to improve to 3-2 on the young season.
The Wolves had seven players who scored six or more points, which is what Sanderson, the 12-year coach of the Wolves, was looking for from a team that had only four players in the lineup from last season’s 19-11 team that advanced to the NJCAA Region IV semifinals.
“They were a scrappy team that fought, and that was good for our kids since we tell them that the game is never over,” Sanderson said. “In our first five games, it’s been pretty balanced. Gianna [Anderson], who transferred from Milwaukee, really makes us go and has had five good games.”
Anderson, who lives in Plainfield, paced the Wolves by scoring 14 of her game-high 20 points in the final half and she also had six rebounds and six assists.
“We just had to start being more aggressive with the ball, and then shots started going in,” Anderson said. “When I was at Milwaukee, we had trouble scoring, so the thing I like about this team is that everyone can score and get to the basket if we need them to.”
Bolingbrook graduates Elisha Dunlap and Kike Ojo and Plainfield South graduate Rebecca Brennan also reached double figures. Dunlap had 15 points and seven rebounds, Ojo had 11 points and 12 rebounds and Brennan had 11 points with six rebounds.
“We started off very slow, but by the end we were able to come together as a team to get the ‘W’,” Dunlap said. “We’re just trying to take it game-by-game and develop and understand each other. I love my teammates and the chemistry that we have. Playing with them is great.”
Three other local players who provided scoring were Joliet Central graduates Harmony Burrell (eight points) and Emily Vollmer (six points, eight rebounds) and Joliet West graduate Dasia Norris (six points).
“As the games go by, we get better and better,” Ojo said. “We all see things that we can improve on. Everybody on our team is talented, and they contribute in any way that they can. We never have a doubt about our players and trust each other and also work hard.”