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In Hoops Debut, Blazers Storm Out Of Gate

Trinity trounces OPRF 63-33 in season opener.

The girls basketball team didn’t take long to show why it’s considered one of the top teams in the Chicago area.

The Blazers scored the first seven points of the game on the way to a 14-2 lead in a 63-33 season-opening victory against visiting Tuesday night in River Forest.

Trinity shot 50 percent from the field en route to a 37-14 halftime lead.

“It was a good start,” Blazers coach Ed Stritzel said. “I thought the first half we carved up their zone. The ball movement was just tremendous.”

DePaul-bound Megan Podkowa scored a game-high 18 points for Trinity. The senior forward shot eight of 13 from the field.

“Overall we looked pretty good,” Podkowa said. “We played well together. As we play more games together we’ll continue to play better.”

Sophomore guard Lauren Prochaska helped spark the Blazers by scoring all 11 of her points in the first half. Shannon McGinnis and Alyssa Dengler finished with eight points apiece.

It was a difficult way for OPRF to start the season.

“It’s a tough first game, but you’ve got to have tough games,” Huskies coach Bob Biggins said. “We have a lot of tough games. We’re just happy to come over and play a team of this caliber. It doesn’t matter if it’s the first game or when it is.”

Illinois State recruit Stekara Hall led OPRF with 12 points. Trinity held the senior guard to a pair of free throws in the first half.

“Stekara Hall is a very good player,” Podkowa said. “Our main goal was to lock her up and I think in the first half we were able to do that. That’s why we got off to a good start. In the second half she got her points, but in the first half our team did a great job defending her.”

Caroline Kelly chipped in nine points for OPRF.

Biggins was encouraged by his team’s second half. After committing 20 turnovers in the first half, the Huskies tallied only seven over the final two quarters.

“I’m real happy with the way we played the second half,” Biggins said. “I thought we competed. Obviously we have things to work out. We’ll sort it out. We saw some really good things in the second half. Most of the problems were self-imposed in the first half. I think we corrected some of them.” 

Trinity has high hopes for the season.

“We’re trying to win a state championship,” Stritzel said. “You never know what God has in store for you, but that’s our goal. We went undefeated over the summer. We feel we’re as good as anybody out there. Trinity has made tremendous strides. I think we’ve closed the gap. I’ll take our chances against anybody.”

“We want to go undefeated and have the best record that we’ve ever had here at Trinity,” Podkowa said. “We definitely want to win state this year. We think it’s our year.”

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