BasketballBLOOMINGTON – Tremont High’s girls basketball team entered the finals of the 99th Annual McLean County Tournament Thursday night at Illinois Wesleyan’s Shirk Center, with relative ease, defeating Downs Tri-Valley, 44-20.

The victory puts the Lady Turks in the finals against Ridgeview, who defeated LeRoy, 65-42. The two teams will meet for the girls’ championship Saturday at Shirk Center, starting with a 6:30p.m. tip-off.

Tremont trailed early in the contest, down 3-0 following a trey by Madison Roberts to get the game started. Dori Dudley’s deuce one minute into the game cut the Vikings’ lead, 3-2. Tanna Hinthorne scored a deuce 30 seconds later, giving Tri-Valley a 5-2 lead.

But Kiley Bugaieski answered with a three of her own – in her 20th straight game where she has scored a trey this season — to tie the game at 5-all with 5:21 left in the quarter. And Nichole Wagenbach sinking one of two free throws after that set the Turks on course toward an 8-0 run to close out the first quarter with a 13-5 lead.

TremontIn fact, the streak didn’t end until after Dudley sank the opening basket of the second quarter, giving the Lady Turks a 15-5 lead with 7:14 until halftime.

Hannah Sanidas scored six points in the second quarter for Tri-Valley, whose defense struggled to keep up with the streaking Turks, as Tremont pressed on to a 24-13 lead.

Wegenbach starred in Tremont’s third quarter, scoring 6 points, including a layup that began for her as a steal off a Tri-Valley opponent. The junior forward led all players on the night with 15 points. She was followed in double figures by Dudley’s 11. No Tri-Valley players reached double-digits on the night, as the Lady Turks led the Vikings 34-20 going into the fourth quarter. But Tri-Valley lost its fight in the fourth quarter, as Tremont outscored them, 10-0, en route to the final score.

Tri-Valley“Our girls knew we could beat them,” said Tremont head coach Michelle Williams, referencing an overtime loss Tri-Valley handed them earlier this month. “Tonight, we changed up what we were going to do against them. Tonight, we changed up (and) played a slowed-down zone defense rather than our usual man-on-man.

“We had some big things happen tonight,” Williams added. “We had some nice blocked shots tonight.

“(Our) team likes to play zone defense (so) I challenged them,” Williams said. “I told them that so long as we can control them (and) get our hands in the passing lane, we’ll see if (Tri-Valley) can shoot from outside tonight.”

“(Tremont) did everything we thought they were going to,” said Tri-Valley head coach Brad Harmon. “In the fourth quarter, I just couldn’t hardly get energy out of anybody. (Tremont) came out in the third quarter and gained some energy, and we got down and lost energy (going into the fourth quarter).”