For the first time in 23 years, the Harrisburg girls' basketball team has won 20 games.
Not since 1989-90 as the Bulldog girls' hoops had this much success, but thanks to a 51-37 victory over West Frankfort Tuesday night, Harrisburg has reason to celebrate.
Bulldogs head coach Jake Stewart claims he doesn't take much credit in the recent success.
"This whole team deserves a lot of credit on what they have done this year. Its really rewarding as a coach to see the hard work they have put into basketball pay off."
Harrisburg worked up a 17-10 first quarter lead and led 30-18 at halftime as the Redbirds were outscored 13-8 in the second quarter.
Harrisburg got going in the paint early with Shelby Boer scoring 10 points, finishing with a game-high 18, while Hanna Jones tacked on fourth to also finish in double figures with 10 points.
In the second quarter Harrisburg got into foul trouble with Lindsey Murray, Hanna Jones, and Boer on the bench all with two fouls. Freshman guards Kelsey Hobbs and Alexa Burtis came in and hit two big 3-pointer along with a Ashley Ferrell 3-point play and Harrisburg took a 30-18 pt lead in the half.
West Frankfort flipped the script in the third period, outscoring Harrisburg 12-5, but the Bulldogs found their footing in the fourth quarter, holding off the Redbirds with a 16-7 run.
"We could not make a shot in the third quarter," Stewart said. "We are a team that when we are in a shooting slump and all we can do is shoot ourselves out of it." Harrisburg pulled away in the fourth with Boer and Hanna Jones scoring 14 of the Bulldogs' 16 fourth quarter points.
Boer had 12 rebounds on the night and Hanna Jones had 11 for double doubles. "Hanna and Shelby played great tonight when we needed them to step up."
In junior varisty action, Harrisburg improves to 14-1 on the year beating West Frankfort 25-24.
Alexa Burtis had 19 points for the Bulldogs, while Kailtlyn Keith finsihed with five points and Hannah Bartok had a free throw.
Harrisburg 17 13 5 16- 51
West Frankfort 10 8 12 7- 37
Harrisburg (51) Ferrell 3 2-3 9, Boer 7 4-4 18, Murray 1 2-6 4, H. Jones 3 4-7 10, Burtis 1 0-0 3, Hobbs 2 0-0 3, D. Jones 2 0-3 5. Totals: 18 12-23 51
West Frankfort (37) Wilce 6 2-2 15, Saillez 4 0-0 9, Summers 2 0-0 4, Calvert 1 0-1 3, Stewart 2 2-4 6, Totals: 15 4-9 37
3-Pointers: Harrisburg 3 (Ferrell, Burtis, Hobbs) West Frankfort 3 (Wilce, Calvert, Saillez). Fouls: Harrisburg 15, West Frankfort 18... Fouled otu WF Melvin. Record: Harrisburg 20-5, 6-3