CHAMPAIGN — As seasons change, and as years pass by, there are constants that remain within the Shiloh High School girls’ basketball program.
The Raiders are annual fixtures in the Class 1A state rankings, and coach David Tingley’s team will always have an assortment of perimeter shooters.
The current 8-0 Shiloh squad is carrying on the tradition. Bethany McGinness, Shelby Smith and Morgan Wood all hit third-quarter three-pointers Saturday as the Raiders expanded a one-point halftime lead against Iroquois West en route to a 36-29 nonconference triumph at Parkland College.
“We’ve been very fortunate to have girls who are able to hit outside shots,” said Tingley, whose team is ranked sixth in 1A. “We work at it in practice, getting the feet set and shooting the ball quickly.”
Shiloh goes hard during the summer, then takes a break.
“When they get into cross-country and volleyball, they’re not shooting on a daily basis,” Tingley said. “That’s not a bad thing. They need to get away from that and come back fresh.”
Smith led Shiloh with 10 points, McGinness had eight points, Betsy Bogle had a team-high seven rebounds and Lauren Moses blocked six shots.
“This is probably one of my better groups, as far as leadership,” Tingley said. “They keep the intensity up.”
At the top of his list of most improved Raiders is Wood, a senior guard.
“She could shoot last year, but now she can do so many more things,” Tingley said. “She’s very confident. She runs 30 to 40 miles a week on top of practice. She’s in rock-solid shape.”
A three-pointer by Wood with 1:36 left in the first half pushed Shiloh into the lead for good, 14-12. The lead grew to 13 points in the final period.
As for the lofty state ranking, Tingley isn’t convinced it’s accurate.
“I chuckled when I saw it,” he said. “A lot of that, early in the season, is name notoriety and what your record was in the past.”
Iroquois West (5-4) was led by freshman Skylar Small with nine points. Another IW ninth-grader, Andrea Fuoss, cleared a team-high seven rebounds.
Ridgewood 37, Cissna Park 35. Two three-point shots in the final 13 seconds were off the mark as Cissna Park fell to Ridgewood in the second game of the Parkland College Shootout.
“We had good looks at the end,” Cissna Park coach Mark Redeker said. “We needed a game like that. It was good to compete.”
Sophomore Alexis Knake scored a game-high 19 points for the Timberwolves and made 6 of 6 fourth-quarter free throws to keep her team in contention.
Cissna Park (5-4) held Ridgewood to 25 percent accuracy from the field (11 of 44).
“Defense has been our Achilles’ heel in games we’ve lost,” Redeker said, “but today, our defense was better than it has been.
“We’re a young team (one senior on the roster) that has to learn to play defense.”
Freshman Addison Stoller grabbed a game-high nine rebounds for Cissna Park. Junior Madison Overbey had nine points and eight rebounds.
The future is bright, Redeker said.
“We’re a team that can be fun to watch,” he said.