It has been a disappointing season for Janesville Parker’s girls basketball team.
The Vikings came into Thursday night’s game with only six wins and riding a four-game losing streak.
Nothing like a little crosstown rivalry game to cure what ails you.
Julia Hartwig scored 16 points and grabbed 18 rebounds to lead Parker to a 47-37 Big Eight win over Janesville Craig.
Parker (7-10, 5-9) never trailed in the game in completing the season sweep.
Craig (8-10, 5-9) came into the game averaging 57.8 points per game but was held 20 points below its average. The Cougars were just 2-for-19 from 3-point range.
Parker coach Jennah Hartwig said her team executed its game plan to perfection.
“We kind of changed our defense up a bit this week, and they bought into it,” coach Hartwig said. “It’s new, and we made a couple of mistakes, but overall, I was really pleased with the effort on the defensive end.
“Craig didn’t shoot the ball as well as they did the first time we played them, but we also didn’t give them as many open looks as we did the first time.”
Parker jumped out to a 14-5 lead with 12:45 to play in the half, but Craig fought back and eventually tied the game at 17-17 with 7:19 left. The Vikings finished the half on a 10-2 run despite Hartwig picking up her third foul with 2:48 left.
An 8-0 run by Parker to start the second half, including back-to-back 3-pointers by Jacy Benway and Jena Forrestal, pushed the lead to 35-19 with 10:46 to play. The Cougars would get no closer than nine the rest of the way.
Craig, which was held to its lowest point total of the season, went scoreless the first 7:29 of the second half.
Craig coach Kerry Storbakken thought his team had its chances but simply fizzled offensively.
“If you would’ve told me that we’d hold Parker to 47 points and Julia would only have 16, that’s a recipe for a win,” Storbakken said. “But some nights the shooting is just not there and it snowballs. That’s what happened tonight.
“But give Parker credit, too. I’ve said all along they’re a much better team than their record would indicate. We came in averaging about 65 points a game in the conference and only scored 37 tonight.”
Craig cut the lead to nine at with 2:07 to play on Cassie Goswick’s jumper, but Benway delivered the knockout blow with a 3 from the left corner to make it 46-34 with 1:50 to play.
Hartwig was her usual dominating self. The 6-foot-2 junior and UW-Green Bay recruit continued to be a double/double machine. The Big Eight’s leading scorer and rebounder had 16 points and 18 boards despite her foul trouble in the first half.
Goswick had 11 points to lead Craig, while freshman Claudia Fieras had 10 points off the bench.
Coach Hartwig hopes her team can build off the season sweep.
“We can celebrate this one tonight, but we’ve got a job to do and it starts at practice tomorrow,” Hartwig said. “Beating Craig is nice, but it’s not our end goal. But confidence-wise, I hope this is a big step.”
PARKER 47, CRAIG 37
Craig (37)—Pierson 3-0-7; Parkhurst 2-1-5; Elgas 1-0-2; Fieras 3-3-10; Goswick 5-1-11; Dunlavy 1-0-2. Totals: 15-5-37
Parker (47)—Benway 3-0-8; Shelton 2-0-4; Forrestal 3-1-9; Graesslin 1-1-4; Veguilla 1-0-2; Hartwig 6-4-16; Porter 2-0-4. Totals: 18-6-47
Janesville Craig 19 18—37
Janesville Parker 27 20—47
Three-point goals—Craig 2 (Pierson, Fieras), Parker 5 (Benway 2, Forrestal 2, Graesslin). Free throws missed—Craig 5, Parker 12. Total fouls—Craig 16, Parker 14. Fouled out—Fieras.