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PALATINE — The best high school girls’ basketball team in Indiana is decidedly better than one of the best in Illinois.

That is decidedly as in undefeated Carmel, Ind., being able to pitch a third-quarter shutout against previously undefeated Rock Island in a 63-42 win by the Greyhounds in the Chicagoland Invitational Showcase at Palatine Fremd on Saturday afternoon.

“We just played one of the best there is nationally,” said Rock Island coach Thad Hoover, his Rocks now 8-1, with Carmel moving to 10-0. “If they don’t win their state tournament, I will be shocked. They have seven Division I players, signed or prospects, for a reason.”

For a half, the Rocks were within range of the powerhouse. Carmel led 35-27 at halftime, but it was 28-25 when Rocky’s junior Division I prospect Brea Beal drove the baseline and, instead of drawing a foul call, was called for traveling. It was one of three times that happened in the first half.

Beal scored in the final seconds of the first half to break a 7-0 Carmel run, but that was just a mini-run compared to what Carmel had in store for the third quarter. Rock Island did not score over the next 11 minutes and 15 seconds. The Rocks took, and missed six 3-point attempts and committing 10 turnovers in the third quarter. It was 50-27 heading to the fourth quarter. Hannah Simmer ended the drought with a basket with 4:45 to go in the game.

“They are better,” Hoover said of Carmel. “They are decidedly better. They are.

“We couldn’t stop them. But, that is why we play these games, to learn from them.”

For the Rocks, Beal and Texas Tech signee Chrislyn Carr had 14 points apiece, and had 31 of the team’s 46 shot attempts. Beal fought hard for a game-high dozen rebounds.

— Marc Nesseler, Lee News Network

Pleasant Valley 46, Cedar Rapids Kennedy 38: Class 5A fifth-ranked Pleasant Valley held Cedar Rapids Kennedy scoreless for more than nine minutes in the second half Saturday to escape with a non-conference road win.

The Spartans (3-0) went on a 13-0 run to turn a six-point deficit into a seven-point lead. Carli Spelhaug had a team-high 15 points while Kira Arthofer tossed in 13 and Ellie Spelhaug finished with 12.

Muscatine 50, Linn-Mar 47: Muscatine outscored Linn-Mar 23-8 in the third quarter to build a 16-point lead. It turned out to be just enough to stave off Linn-Mar for its first win of the season.

Freshman Zoey Long had 16 points for the Muskies, who rebounded from a 32-point loss to PV the night before.

Boys basketball

Rock Island 50, Ottawa 41: Rock Island’s JaMir Price had been struggling at the free-throw line. Maybe all he needed was a couple of in-game rulebook violations to help him break out of that in the Rocks’ 50-41 win over Ottawa at Kingman Gymnasium on Saturday night.

At the line for a pair of two-shot opportunities in the final three minutes, Price first encountered a Pirates’ player clapping his hands distractingly right next to him on the stripe. Price sank that one, the official told the player of the illegality, and then Price sank the other.

“Didn’t hear it,” Price said. “What I could hear, though, was the Ottawa student section behind me. They were very loud.”

Then, 24 seconds later, Price was back at the line for two more free throws. This time, two youngsters in the first row of bleachers facing Price flashed their cell phone lights as he shot the first. Again, point, warning, and another point.

Those were the only free throws taken by Price in the game, as he finished with a game-high 18 points as the Rocks pulled away in the final five minutes.

— Marc Nesseler, Lee News Network

Dubuque Wahlert 59, Assumption 50: Senior Trent Fitzpatrick had a game-high 18 points, but Assumption couldn't avenge last year's season-ending defeat to Wahlert on Saturday in the season opener at Dubuque.

Wahlert built an early lead and held off an Assumption charge. Ray Thrapp chipped in nine points for Assumption. 

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