Women’s basketball holds a 6-1 Conference record

HANDS OUT :  Facing a Niles West offender, junior Lizzie Shaw prepares to stop a drive to the net during a game on Feb. 3. The Titans currently hold a 20-4 record.

Sophie Mason

HANDS OUT : Facing a Niles West offender, junior Lizzie Shaw prepares to stop a drive to the net during a game on Feb. 3. The Titans currently hold a 20-4 record.

Simon Farber, Staff Reporter

The South women’s basketball team finished the month of January with a perfect 7-0 record to improve to 20-4, despite playing seven of their last ten games without senior Captain Carie Weinman.

Weinman missed about four weeks of playing time because of Iliotibial Band Tendinitis, according to head coach Steve Weissenstein.  Despite missing their leading scorer for almost a full month, the Titans still managed to win five of their seven games during Weinman’s absence.  Although the Titans dropped two of their first three games at the Wheaton North Holiday Tournament without Weinman, Weissenstein said his girls understood what they had to do in order to be successful.

“The second game we played at Wheaton, there was a little bit of ‘Woe is me, we don’t have [Weinman]’,” Weissenstein said. “[Weinman’s] defensive presence was something that we really missed and obviously our offense is built around her.  Every girl had to step up her scoring, because there’s 25 points a game [from Weinman] that we don’t have anymore.”

Senior Carolyn Kuhn scored 20 points against West Aurora to secure a 54-37 Titan victory on Jan. 4, ending a two game losing streak.  Kuhn believes that the tight-knit relationship between her teammates ultimately led to their success.

“We are a very close team as it is, and that really helped us in how we played without Weinman,” Kuhn said. “Throughout those games without her, a bunch of different people stepped up, which was really cool to see.”

The Titans won each of their last four games without Weinman, who returned to action with limited playing time on Jan. 20 against New Trier.  Kuhn senses that the team is stronger than ever now that Weinman is back in the lineup heading into the last weeks of the season.

“[Weinman’s absence] showed us that we can do [well] without her, […] but we are so much better with her,” Kuhn said.  “We know that we can play with anyone, it’s just a matter of pulling all the strings together at the right time. We haven’t set a certain goal, we just [want] to keep consistently improving throughout the season.”

Weissenstein, who expressed similar sentiments as Kuhn, doesn’t view the time missed by Weinman as a lost cause for the team. Instead, the more balanced offensive attack could lead to success going forward this season.

“In the long run, it might benefit us because everybody had to step up there for [the] seven games [and] other girls saw that they [too] could score,” Weissenstein said. “We want to beat everybody we play, we can beat everybody we play; we have the same focus, except now we have Weinman [back], so it’s all good going forward.”

On Feb. 3, the Titan’s beat Niles West by a score of 58-36 at their senior night.

“Senior night was very emotional, but really exciting and fun,” Kuhn said. “Our team is very close, so it was hard to know that it was our last time playing in the dome, but I wouldn’t have wanted to do it with any other group of people. Senior night came a lot faster than I thought it would, but it was really cool to experience it with my teammates and have the support of friends and family.

According to Kuhn, the team is currently in a good place; however, they are going to keep working hard in practice and during games in order to continue to succeed.

“Our goals for future games are just  [to] take it game by game and focus on what’s ahead,” Kuhn said. “We’re playing well and feeling pretty good right now, so we just want to keep up our intensity on the court and on the bench. Also something we’re working on in practice is moving the ball around quickly and working on getting each other open. [We] especially [want to get] Carie [open].”

The Titans currently hold a Conference record of 7-1, and the women will finish off the regular season tonight at Evanston, according to Kuhn.