On Wednesday, the Chanute Blue Comets and Independence Bulldogs met up for the first round of Sub-State. Chanute won the contest 40-35. Independence saw a double-double from Abby Veile with 12 points and 14 rebounds. The Comets were led by Kori Babcock’s 15 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 steals despite only scoring 4 points in the first half.
“[Babcock’s] an all-state player that doesn’t want her career to end,” Chanute’s head coach Dustin Fox said. “That’s what they do. She’s a good player and very rarely are you going to see her have a bad game. She might have a bad quarter or bad half, but she’s mentally tough enough to turn it around and make plays when they need to be made.”
Both teams struggled shooting all night but started off especially slow. The score was only 10-9 Chanute after the first quarter. The second was more of the same with Indy leading 18-17 at halftime. Veile had 6 points and 5 rebounds in the first half.
Chanute kicked off the second half with a 7-2 run over the first couple minutes. However, Independence rallied and the Comets found themselves down 34-31 entering the final quarter.
Behind 4th-quarter points from Babcock, the Comets were able to swing the game and get the 40-35 win.
“Tonight was not pretty in any way, shape, or form, but we were tough. I thought, especially there in the fourth quarter, we really locked in on the defensive end. We got some big stops and we were able to get enough buckets to hold on,” Fox said.
The Blue Comets were playing great defense, grabbing steals and swatting shots, in the second half and throughout the night. Along with Babcock’s 5 steals, sophomore Jacelyn Catron had an impressive 4 blocks.
“It was kind of a team effort [on defense], we all really locked in and started communicating at a high level, making sure that we were getting out to their shooters. They are a good team and they have a lot of kids that could hurt you,” Fox said, “So we wanted to make sure that we limited their opportunities and tried to make them make one more pass, and when the shot went up, held them to one. I thought we were tough on the boards.”