By Jeremy Izzio
MAYVILLE - The No. 4 Silver Creek Black Knights took down the No. 1 seed Holland Lady Dutchmen in blowout fashion Thursday with a 54-34 victory in a Section 6 Class C-1 girls basketball semifinal contest at Chautauqua Lake Central School.
Silver Creek’s Jordan Brooks pulls down a rebound away from Holland's Julia Grupp during a Section 6 Class C-1 semifinal basketball game at Chautauqua Lake Central School. See additional photos at cu.post-journal.com.
P-J photo by Scott Reagle
In a matchup between two of Section 6's brightest stars - Silver Creek's Jordan Brooks and Holland's Olivia Schmidt - it was Brooks whose star shone the brightest.
Brooks finished with 33 points, 27 rebounds and four blocks to lead her team to victory.
Brooks dominated both ends of the floor by altering shots on defense while scoring at will in the post. Even when the Black Knights missed shots, Brooks was there to clean up the mess.
Eleven of Brooks' rebounds were offensive as Holland couldn't manage to box out the much-taller center.
"Jordan had a huge game," Silver Creek coach Tammy Rice said. "We talked about getting her position on the block and looking to intimidate and not necessarily block shots. I was concerned with Schmidt's speed and how she was going to take it inside to Jordan all night. We were worried she might get into early foul trouble, but she listened and kept her hands straight up."
On the other hand, it was a rough night for Schmidt who finished with 22 points. She was held to only 11 points through three quarters of play before piling on 11 more with the game far out of reach.
It didn't take long for Silver Creek to build a lead. The Black Knights opened the game on an 11-0 run and took a 13-2 lead into the second quarter.
The second quarter was played nearly even, 12-10 in favor of Silver Creek, but the Black Knights still held a 25-12 lead at the half.
After scoring 15 points in the first half, Brooks continued to pour it on in the third quarter. Brooks scored nine of her team's 11 points in the period as Silver Creek built a 36-19 lead.
Holland turned up the defensive pressure in the fourth quarter, but it was to no avail. Jade Lewis broke the press masterfully all game and ran the offense to perfection in the fourth quarter.
"I'm super proud of Jade," Rice said. "We've had games where we've lost them in the fourth quarter when a team presses because sometimes we would disappear and Jade was left to bring up the ball alone. She made really smart decisions in setting up our press-breaker. We had a couple of fastbreak opportunities where I don't think the ball even hit the floor.''
"Her leadership when we didn't get into our press-breaker and when she had to bring it down the court was amazing," Rice added. "Once we got it across mid-court I thought she had great composure in setting up the offense and using the clock. I think that really worked to our advantage as well."
Silver Creek led by 24 points midway through the fourth quarter before loosening the grip on Schmidt.
Schmidt, a sophomore, came into the game averaging over 27 points a game, but Silver Creek's defensive game plan proved to be too much for the athletic guard.
"We spent the whole week preparing for Schmidt," Rice said. "I've watched her play twice and she's a tremendous guard. She penetrates the lane well and can shoot from the outside. So all week we focused on double teaming her and running a triangle behind her in help position. We switched between that and a 1-3-1 zone and were able to contain her."
Schmidt scored nine points in the final minute, but in the end it was the Black Knights celebrating the lopsided victory.
"We played great team basketball tonight and a lot of girls stepped up," Rice said. "We have struggled in the fourth quarter all season and our focus was to not let that happen again (yesterday). We played in a very competitive league this season and that really benefitted us coming down the stretch."
Lewis finished with seven assists to go with three points, two steals and two rebounds.
Kaylee Dexter hit big shots and penetrated the lane consistently on her way to eight points and seven rebounds.
Sarah Adams added nine rebounds in the win.
Silver Creek will face Tapestry Charter School in the Section 6 Class C-1 final at Jamestown High School on Saturday at 4:30 p.m.