Just one week ago, Benet was on the wrong side of a 20 point drubbing at the hands of Mother McAuley.
The talent was undoubtedly there for the preseason number two overall team, but for whatever reason, the Redwings struggled to find their footing in the early going.
“The Beaver Dam, McAuley was four games in five days, and we had state championship teams who got their butts kicked in December,” said Benet head coach Joe Kilbride. “The message was let’s just learn from it and use it as an opportunity to get better from it.”
Fast forward just one week and a revitalized Benet squad have done exactly that.
The Redwings are now riding high on a three game win streak, the latest triumph being their most impressive, a 62-21 winner over #6 Marist.
“That’s the best we played, honestly I did not expect anything like that,” said Kilbride. “Marist is a very good team, we just got it going and that outcome will never happen again.”
Benet started the nights proceedings with the solid play from one of their more unheralded starters Kendall Holmes.
Holmes racked up four points and two assists in the opening quarter which helped the Redwings jump out to a 16-8 lead.
“The thing I love about Holmes is every day she works hard, plays with what we call effort and enthusiasm,” said Kilbride. “She’s a good shooter, takes good shots, she worked her butt off defensively and just does everything for you. She really got us going.”
Benet would extend their lead to double digits thanks to the play of Brooke Schramek, (10 pts, four rebounds, three assists) Clara Prasse (five rebounds and nine assists) and their entire bench (37 points).
“There was a point in the second quarter where I subbed all five of our starters out and we actually stretched the lead. Everybody played tremendously well.”
Though Benet was doing a great job on the offensive side of the ball in the first half, they struggled to contain sophomore Sydney Affolter, who racked up 11 points and four assists in the first half.
That all changed at the beginning of the third quarter. The Redwings not only shut down Affolter, but the entire Marist offense as the Redhawks were only able to score three points over the final 16 minutes of the contest.
“Sydney had 12 of 18 at half and Abby (Callahan) had a couple and we were really trying to load up on those two,” said Kilbride. “The kids did a good job of recognizing that and making it difficult on her to get into space.”
This dominating stretch could not have come at a better time for Benet. Although it is still early in the season, with a busy schedule on the horizon the Redwings will need all hands on deck to make their push through the ESCC and the Montini Holiday Tournament.
Kilbride concluded: “This was an opportunity to bounce back and I thought we did. I’m pleased with it. When you lose two in a row like that you can get into a funk and start pointing fingers at each other, but we bounced back.”
Benet will take a break from conference play to face off against Naperville North while Marist will have a date with DePaul Prep.