SJO Lady Spartans defeat previously undefeated Monticello on another last second shot by Hannah Dukeman

Hannah Dukeman has a flair for the dramatic. 

Dukeman, who is a sophomore, hit the game-winning jumper to lift the St. Joseph-Ogden Lady Spartans to a 52-51 victory over the Monticello Sages in an Illini Prairie Conference game on Monday evening in St. Joseph. 

The evening was also Senior Night for the Lady Spartans, as they honored their four seniors prior to the start of the varsity contest.  The four seniors being accoladed were Sydney Kelso, Sarah Acklin, Brooke Berry and Alyssa Wilcoxon.

Monticello came into the contest at 13-0 and playing very good basketball, and early in the first half, as they raced out to a 27-24 lead at the half on the Spartans.  However, SJO came out of the halftime locker room to start the third quarter on a 7-0 run to sway the momentum of the game and begin to get the upper hand. 

“I told the team at halftime that we weren’t playing the way we needed to be offensively in the first half, and to set a tone for the first few minutes of the third quarter, and that’s exactly what they did”, SJO head coach Kevin Taylor said following the game on his team’s fast start to begin the second half.

Dukeman, who is no stranger to the last second heroics, nailed a shot to defeat Rockford Lutheran in overtime last month in the the State Farm Holiday Classic in Bloomington.  Dukeman finished the game with 9 points, but will remember the final two for quite some time. 

“I thought back to that night in the State Farm Classic, when we were tied, and just put it up, and it went in”, Dukeman said after the game on her game-winning shot. 

Bree Trimble led SJO in scoring with a game-high 21 points, while Peyton Crowe added 14 for the Lady Spartans, who improve to 15-6 with the win.  SJO shot 22-52 (42%) from the field for the game, including 3-9 from long range.  The Spartans shot 5-10 from the foul line, and missed a couple key free throws that could have decided the game, but luckily for SJO, it didn’t.

Monticello (13-1) was led in scoring by Tatum McCall with 20 points, while Zanna Myers and Emily Wilson also notched double figures, scoring 11 and 10 points, respectively. 

The Sages shot 18-47 (38%) from the field, including just 4-11 from beyond the arc.  Monticello made the most of their attempts from the foul line, making 11 of 18 from the stripe. 

The Lady Spartans will be on the road Thursday night when they travel to Pontiac to battle the Indians in an Illini Prairie Conference matchup.


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