the voice of Lakes Community High School

Lakes Student Media

the voice of Lakes Community High School

Lakes Student Media

the voice of Lakes Community High School

Lakes Student Media

Lakes’ Unconventional Offense

Typical basketball teams have a go-to scorer who delivers double digit points every game. This Lakes team is different.
Abby Gedville
The Lakes girls basketball team stands for the pledge before facing off against the Wauconda Bulldogs.

“You look at other teams and they usually have someone who’s a clear leading scorer…That’s just not us,” said first-year head coach, Grant Murray.

The current Lakes girl’s basketball team’s stat line is extremely unique when compared to past seasons. As opposed to previous squads, this year’s team doesn’t have one standout player that takes over every game.

“We don’t have someone that’s gonna casually drop 20 points on a daily basis,” said Murray. “They’re certainly capable of it, but that’s just not the way [this team] works.”

Instead, the Eagles find more success by spreading out the offense, giving every player the chance to rack up a solid sum of points per game.

“It’s pretty unique to have the scoring distribution that we have,” said Murray. “Every one of them has the ability to lead us on any given night.”

An entire lineup’s worth of players have now scored over 100 points this season. Seniors Janae Pullen, Jessica Ross, Inclarity Turney, Madison Twarling, and junior Emily Ovaska have all led the Eagles by breaking through the 100-point barrier, each in their own way.

The Eagles are currently led in points by senior shooting guard, Madison Twarling. Her stat line is highlighted by her impressive 217 points and 31.5% field goal percentage (FG%).

Clarity Turney 3-pt shot

“She’s our leading scorer. She’s been scoring in double figures recently- almost every game,” said Murray. “She’s tough to defend because she can shoot from outside…and if you overplay her outside, she’s able to get to the basket and hit some tough layups.”

Twarling stands in second place in the Northern Lake County Conference (NLCC) in points per game and has remained a constant force for the Eagles. Ranked third in this stat is senior guard, Janae Pullen who also holds the school records for career three-pointers made (157) and single-season three-pointers made from her 2021-2022 season (73).

“Janae is one of the one of the best shooters in school history,” said Murray. “She’s really embraced a different role from what she’s had in the past. I think previous years she was more of just a spot-up shooter, where now she’s starting to attack the basket a little bit more.”

Twarling agrees, ”Janae obviously is a good three-point shooter. So most of her shots are three-pointers, but occasionally she can drive it too.”

Another star record holder who has broken four records during her time at Lakes is Inclarity “Clarity” Turney. The senior point guard holds the season and career record for steals (282), the single-season record for assists, and the career record for blocks (88). Turney is a vital asset due to her tremendous ability to efficiently distribute the ball to her teammates and occasionally score.

“She’s so fast and so quick, so her ability to get to the basket opens up shots for other people,” said Murray. “Sometimes it opens up shots for her, which is where she gets a lot of points- and any scoring we get from her is just an added bonus.”

Turney’s stat line is highlighted by 105 assists, 101 steals, 33 blocks, and 139 points.

“Clarity definitely scores the most by driving,” said Twarling. “She doesn’t shoot much outside, but she has really good drives to the lane, and when she steals it she’ll have good fast breaks.”

The final senior who is an essential part of the Lakes offense is senior shooting guard, Jessica “Jess” Ross. As a non-starter, Ross’s 100-point campaign is even more impressive.

“Jess Ross has been a spark plug off the bench for us,” said Murray. “It’s nice to be able to bring someone in who has so much experience playing basketball…[and] when she gets hot, she can chew.”

Finally, the most recent addition to the 100-point club is junior power forward, Emily Ovaska. Standing at six feet tall, Ovaska uses her size to sport an incredible 44.7 FG% and has accumulated 102 points and 115 rebounds.

“She benefits a lot from from just camping out underneath the basket,” said Murray. “We’ve got a couple of inbound plays that we run specifically for her that she’s able to just kind of catch and shoot just because of the benefits of her size.”

The unique offensive distribution has offered a lot to the success of this year’s team. In addition to high-scoring games, it also affects opposing teams’ defense.

“I think it’s really good that we have multiple shooters on our team…because then [the defense] has to focus on multiple people…and not just one threat,” said Twarling.

Combining for 73% of the teams’ points scored, these five players have all had their big nights. With four seniors handling most of the offense, Lakes looks forward to the emergence of new stars to fill the big shoes of Pullen, Ross, Turney, and Twarling in the next few seasons.

Although the 2023-2024 season has come to a close, this year is one to remember. Between the achievement of multiple records broken and a successful inaugural season for coach Murray, the Lakes girls basketball program is on an upward trajectory.

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About the Contributors
Erik Stover
Erik Stover, Staff
Erik is a senior and this is his first year on staff. In his free time, he enjoys playing indoor and beach volleyball. He also likes listening to music and kayaking and paddleboarding on Cedar Lake. He is a Purdue basketball and volleyball superfan. His favorite athlete of all time is Micah Christenson from the USA National Volleyball Team.
Abby Gedville
Abby Gedville, Digital Media Director
Abby Gedville is a senior, going into her second year on staff. She enjoys playing sports and taking photos in her free time. Gedville is planning on being a 12 sport athlete by the time she graduates. Her favorite athlete of all time is Marian Hossa.