WHITEWATER — After his team failed to get the message about Whitewater's full-court press, East Troy High girls basketball coach Jeff Brown said he must have been speaking Russian in the team huddle going into the fourth quarter.
Although that message missed the mark, the Trojans eventually fought back from a two-point fourth-quarter deficit and pulled out a 61-52 victory over Whitewater in a battle of Rock Valley North unbeatens here Tuesday night.
Andrea Olsen's nine fourth-quarter points helped propel No. 2 East Troy (10-0, 7-0) into first place in the Rock Valley North.
"I was really proud how we kept our composure in the fourth quarter and took care of business," Brown said.
The Whippets, however, nearly put the Trojans' offense out of business midway through the fourth quarter, thanks to a punishing full-court press that turned a nine-point East Troy lead into a 48-46 Whitewater advantage.
But the veteran Trojans seemed unfazed by the turnaround and eventually knotted the game at 50 on an Olsen layup with 3:30 left to play.
Whitewater (10-1, 6-1), ranked No. 7 in the WIAA Division 2 state rankings, proved to be the more inexperienced team from there, managing just two points the rest of the way. East Troy took full advantage with an 11-2 spurt to finish off the Whippets.
"East Troy is veteran team. It showed down the stretch of the game," Whitewater coach Judy Harms said. "We made too many mistakes. You have to love the comebacks that our kids gave, but we just couldn't close it, which comes down to them (the Trojans) just having more experience than us."
The disappointing loss spoiled Whippet guard Brooke Trewyn's team-high 23 points.
Trewyn's hard-nosed effort helped keep Whitewater within striking distance after East Troy guard Rachel Atchison opened the game with 11 points en route to a 16-13 East Troy lead.
Breanna Gaspervich then followed Atchison's lead in the second quarter with 12 points to help East Troy build a 33-27 halftime lead.
Gaspervich paced East Troy with 23 points, while Olsen and Atchison each had 12.
The Trojans built the lead to nine points going into the fourth quarter, before Whitewater unleashed its 13-2 run and grabbed a temporarily lead.
"Give Whitewater credit, they shot the tar out of the ball for the first few minutes of the fourth quarter," Brown said. "But my kids didn't panic. I think with our 10 seniors, they looked at me and said they had been here before."
The Trojans certainly didn't let their coach down.
EAST TROY 61, WHITEWATER 52
East Troy (61)—Gaspervich, 8-6-23; Atchison 4-1-12; Oleson, 3-1-8; Olsen, 5-1-12; Riemer, 1-0-2; Morris, 0-4-4. Totals: 21-13-61.
Whitewater (52)—Trewyn, 6-10-23; Schumacher, 4-0-8; Reynolds, 4-0-9; Mathews, 2-2-6: Dolan, 2-0-6. Totals: 18-12-12-52.
East Troy 16 17 11 17—61
Whitewater 13 14 8 17—52
Three-point goals—East Troy 6 (Atchison 3, Gaspervich, Oleson, Olsen), Whitewater 4 (Dolan 2, Reynolds, Trewyn). Free throws missed—East Troy 5, Whitewater 4. Total fouls—East Troy 17, Whitewater 15.
Junior varsity—East Troy won 46-30