Lady Vikes survive foul-fest with Bears

By By DAN WEISS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- It was amazing nobody fouled out.
And fortunate nobody got hurt.
As physical as it was, the Niles varsity basketball team survived a Southwest Michigan Athletic Conference West Division game against St. Joseph Tuesday night, coming away with a 56-36 victory to remain undefeated overall and in the division.
The two teams combined for 49 fouls and shot 67 free throws.
And free throws were the key to the Vikings' victory.
St. Joseph managed to make just 18-of-38 from the charity stripe while the Vikings capitalized on 18-of-29 free throws.
Both teams exceeded the seven-foul limit early in both halves, making free throws of the utmost importance.
St. Joseph made just 10-of-26 free throws in the first half and head coach Rick Bloodworth saw it as an opportunity missed.
As it was, Niles pulled away for a 15-point halftime lead and it didn't take long for that lead to stretch to 20 points in the second half.
The Bears turned the ball over 15 times before halftime and 22 times in the game.
Niles also held a huge advantage underneath the basket as it outrebounded the Bears 47-25. Sarah Dreher pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds and Brandie Radde added eight.
Dreher recorded a double-double as she scored 10 points. Radde and Amber Peters paced the Vikings with 13 points apiece. Peters also had five steals.
Rachel Young and Carlee Maddox led St. Joseph with nine points apiece.
Niles, now 4-0 overall and 2-0 in SMAC West play, travels to Portage Central Thursday.
The Niles junior varsity basketball team beat St. Joseph 41-23. Jessica Shinsky paced the Vikings with 14 points.
Niles………….56
St. Joseph….36
Niles: Ashley Pingel 2 0-2 5, Amber Peters 3 7-9 13, Jessica Johnson 1 0-0 2, Leigh Tyler 0 0-0 0, Brandie Radde 5 0-0 13, Sarah Dreher 2 6-8 10, Kate Whittaker 1 1-2 3, Colombe Martin 0 1-2 1, Melissa Olsen 0 3-4 3, Ashley Spriggs 3 0-2 6. Totals: 17 18-29 56
St. Joseph: Jessica Kish 1 2-4 4, Rachel Young 1 7-10 9, Elizabeth Zielke 0 0-1 0, Kari Anderson 0 0-0 0, Megan Mejeur 2 0-0 4, Mary Schueneman 0 0-2 0, Anna Schueneman 2 2-2 6, Sarah Lund 1 2-4 4, Katie Ryan 0 0-0 0, Kristin Hunnel 0 0-0 0, Sarah Jennings 0 0-0 0, Carlee Maddox 2 5-15 9, Melissa Blake 0 0-0 0. Totals: 9 18-38 36
Niles 12 19 15 10--56
St. Joseph 6 10 10 10--36
3-point shooting: Niles 4 (Radde 3, Pingel), St. Joseph none. Team fouls (fouled out): Niles 28 (none), St. Joseph 21 (none). Team records: Niles 4-0 (2-0 SMAC West), St. Joseph 3-1 (1-1)

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