Girls Varsity Basketball
Game Summaries & Headlines.
- Game Date
- Jan 10, 2020
- EAGLES: 45
DAKOTA HIGH SCHOOL: 52
When Eisenhower joined the MAC Red Division for the 2018-2019 season, Dakota’s Cam Grant never got a chance to play the Eagles.
She was hurt.
On Friday night, Grant definitely made her presence known. The Ball State recruit led the top-ranked team in the county to a 52-45 MAC Red victory over the host Eagles.
She finished with a game-high 23 points. She also had 11 rebounds, six blocks and four assists.
“They got into the MAC Red and unfortunately I did not get to play Eisenhower last year because I was injured,” said Grant. “Tonight I for sure wanted to beat them.
“Before every game, I sit down and focus on what I want to do in that game,” continued Grant, a Miss Basketball candidate. “It is about size and being strong inside and knowing what I can do to help the team.
“With Ella and the speed she has, I knew I would get a chance to get some assists and that’s what happened,” said Grant.
Sophomore Ella Burger had a very strong first half. She scored 14 of her 17 points in the first and second quarters. She also had five assists and three steals.
The visiting Cougars led 35-19 at halftime. It was 45-31 heading into the fourth quarter.
That is when the home team started to cause all sorts of problems for Dakota. The Eagles got some steals. They got some buckets. The next thing anyone knew, Tori Verellen had a three-point play for the Eagles to bring them within four points, 49-45, with 46.6 seconds to play.
A free throw by Burger with 18.5 remaining put the advantage up to 50-45.
Appropriately, it was a pair of free throws by Grant that ended the game and provided the final tally, 52-45.
“It was exciting. Give Eisenhower a lot of credit, they did not quit,” said Phil McCune, the Dakota coach. “On the other hand, I give our team a lot of credit on the lead that we built up.
“Overall, I was really happy with how we played. With four or five minutes to go, we called a timeout and tried to get them to slow down. This was a good learning experience for us. We hadn’t been in a game like this.
“No one has come back quite like that on us. We know that Eisenhower has a lot of heart, but so do we,” continued the Dakota team. “There is always a lot of adversity when you go on the road on a Friday night. There was a big crowd and our kids aren’t used to that. It’s good for us. We needed that kind of atmosphere..
“Cam had a fantastic game,” continued the coach. “She did some great things on the floor, both offensively and defensively. Ella Burger, especially in the first half, was phenomenal.”
The game pitted top-ranked Dakota against the Eagles, the second-ranked squad in the county. There was a good crowd at Eisenhower and the fans were not afraid to make some noise.
The Dakota Cougars raised their record to 3-0 in the MAC Red, 8-0 overall.
Eisenhower coach Cliff Piper’s squad fell to 2-1 in the Red, 5-3 overall.
“We were down 20 or 21, but this is a resilient group and we battled back,” said Piper. “I told them after the game I didn’t know if I should be angry at them or proud of them and honestly, I am a little of both. I am much more proud of them, though. They came back and did not give up.”
Eisenhower’s Olivia Stack finished with 12 points. Emma Griffiths scored 11.