KOKOMO — Class was in session Saturday for the Twin Lakes girls basketball team.
Back-to-back reigning Class 3A state champion and No. 1 ranked Northwestern gave the lesson. The Tigers suffocated Twin Lakes from the outset to beat the Indians, 80-28, during a Hoosier Conference crossover game.
Northwestern (2-0) jumped out to a 14-0 advantage, created six turnovers and grabbed seven offensive rebounds before Twin Lakes (1-1) got its first shot attempt in the contest.
“Their length and size presented a lot of challenges. Our girls are not as big as them and Northwestern did a great job covering the court with that length,” Twin Lakes head coach Brad Bowsman said. “Being back-to-back state champions, that played with our confidence and ability to make good decisions. Playing so many freshmen makes it even tougher, but they have won state two years in a row for a reason.”
The Tigers forced 25 Twin Lakes turnovers and grabbed 17 offensive rebounds. The Indians were 0 for 14 from 3-point range.
“Our length creates a lot of issues for teams because we have as many as four six-foot or taller girls on the court covering areas in our zone. Defensively, we did a much better job of communicating with each other and our rotations were better than in the first game,” Northwestern head coach Kathie Layden said. “The excitement of our first home game added to our play and wanting to play at a higher level than we did in the opener.”
Northwestern beat Lafayette Jefferson, 70-15, in its opener.
“We had a few bunnies that we missed here and there that we normally make, but it’s early and we are still working ourselves into basketball shape. A lot of these girls came from the volleyball team and we are still just two weeks into practice,” Layden added. “The good side is that there is a lot of room for improvement, especially for our younger girls that got a lot of time tonight.”
Indiana Miss Basketball candidates Madison Layden and Kendall Bostic paced Northwestern. Layden, a Purdue commit, had 31 points, four assists, four rebounds and four steals while Bostic, who has committed to Michigan State, finished with 15 points and 13 boards.
Twin Lakes’ Lucy Mowery had eight points. Evelyn Scharer added eight points and six rebounds.
“I think this is one of the best teams in the state and we are lucky enough to have them in our conference. We have to strive to emulate what they do on the court. We don’t have their physical strengthens, but we need to take from this game their execution on offense and defense,” Bosman said. “We also need to work to follow a game plan. That’s something that we will have to work and grow to do.”