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GIRLS BASKETBALL: Peotone, Reed-Custer trio headline Interstate Eight conference honors

March 23, 2019

The Interstate Eight is one of the toughest conferences you’ll find in the state. Top to bottom, there’s no layup games.

While this season was no different, the whole conference understood that Sandwich was the team to beat. And although every team gave it their best shot, the Indians walked through the I-8 unscathed.

However, they were challenged by teams who had the ability to shoot, such as Peotone who landed three players on first-team.

Mae Graffeo is just the latest of the Graffeo bloodline to etch herself in Peotone galore and was she ever great this season.

She finished as the Blue Devils’ leading scorer and rebounder at 10.9 points and 9.9 rebounds per game, along with 2.3 blocks.

Shooting specialist Courtney Burks made her way onto first-team after burying 69 triples and finishing the season averaging 10.6 points.

Rounding out the Blue Devils was Sam Gwiazda, who made her money in the paint and ended the season with averages of 10.7 points, 7.7 rebounds and 2.7 steals a night.

Also with three players on first-team was Reed-Custer, led by Antoinette Hill.

She helped guide the Comets to their best season of the decade with averages of 14.2 points and 10.7 rebounds per night.

Kylie Balgemann joins her on first-team following season averages of 9.21 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.3 steals per game.

Speedy guard Jaden Christian rounds out the Comets on first-team after averages of 9.3 points, 3.7 steals, 2.6 assists and 2.3 rebounds nightly.

Herscher’s duo of Mattie Brown and Mya Johanson graced the first-team list for the Tigers.

Brown finished the season tied with Johanson in the scoring department at 14.9 points per game, alongside 7.3 rebounds, 3.6 steals and three assist per game.

For Johanson, after her 14.9 points on a per game basis, she added eight rebounds and 1.8 blocks to her stat line.

Wilmington’s Chloe Sanford craved out a spot on first-team after leading the Wildcats to a double digit win season for the first team this decade and averaged 10.2 points and eight rebounds per game.

Coal City sharpshooter Makenna Crater gave the Coalers their lone representive on first-team after scoring 8.1 points and gabbing 3.6 rebounds per night.

Although Manteno didn’t win a conference game this season, it’s building its program into some thing special, led by Maddie Lacer who averaged 8.6 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists per night.

Joining them on first-team is Sandwich’s Jaylynn Vana along with Sarah and Josie Ness, Plano’s Mackenzie Vann and Kyla Waller, Lisle’s McKenzie Weaver and Emma Rosson, Westmont’s Megan Thompson and Streator’s Natali Haynes.

Special mention

Coal City’s Brooke Chapman and Helen Onsen paved their way onto the special mention list for the I-8.

They’re followed by Herescher’s Megan Berns, Wilmington’s Claire Rink, Plano’s Maddie Jude, Lily Fernandez and Lexi Tisberger, Sandwich’s Claire Roberts and Ava Knepper, Lisle’s Abby Casmer, Streator’s Lyniah Anderson and Westmont’s Aleksa Secularac.