Janesville Craig girls basketball coach Kerry Storbakken knew his team needed to make changes and be more aggressive at the hoop after Tuesday’s 60-58 loss to Madison Memorial.
Those changes were evident Thursday, when Craig downed host Madison West 57-41 in a Big Eight Conference game.
“We struggled with it on Tuesday. but tonight we were going to the basket,” Storbakken said. “Right away, we got after them and we caused some turnovers and got up on them early.”
The Cougars jumped to a 35-18 lead at the half and coasted to victory despite some foul trouble in the second half.
Freshman Claudia Fieiras finished with a team-high 15 points for the Cougars. Fieiras started in place of sophomore Rileigh Elgas, who was out with an illness.
“She got some nice baskets inside and hit some 3s, too,” Storbakken said. “With Rileigh out, we needed her to step up and she did.”
The Cougars’ aggressive attack resulted in them shooting 23 free throws in the first half alone.
“We got to the basket, and they put us at the free-throw line,” Storbakken said. “When we go to the basket, good things happen.”
Junior Emily Pierson added a dozen points for the Cougars, who also got 11 from sophomore Cassie Goswick and nine from Brooke Parkhurst.
Kate Carlson led Madison West with 18 points.
Craig improved to 10-11 overall on the season and 7-10 in the Big Eight Conference. The Cougars finish the regular season with a home game Saturday night against Verona.
CRAIG 57, WEST 41
Craig (57)—Gregg 1-1-4; King 0-2-2; Pierson 3-4-12; Parkhurst 2-5-9; Fieiras 5-3-15; Goswick 2-7-11; Dunlavy 1-2-4. Totals: 14-24-57.
West (41)—Manke 1-0-2; McGrath 1-0-2; Jackson 0-2-2; Carlson 6-6-18; Durcker 2-2-6; Brown 1-1-3; Walters 3-1-8. Totals: 14-12-41.
Janesville Craig 35 22—57
Madison West 18 23—41
3-point goals—Craig 5 (Gregg, Pierson 2, Fieiras 2), Madison West 1 (Walters). Free throws missed—Craig 11, Madison West 7. Total fouls—Craig 18, Madison West 23. Fouled out— Fieiras.