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    Independence avenges early season loss to Brooklyn

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    Independence avenged an early season loss to Brooklyn with a gutty defensive effort and a balanced offensive attack in a 47-34 win over the visiting Hurricanes on Wednesday.

    Back on Jan. 3, Independence held a double-digit lead at Brooklyn before falling, 67-62. The Blue Devils weren’t about to let that happen again.

    “Our defense has been great the last couple of weeks here,” said Independence coach Hugh McMahon. “We gave up the most points all season long at Brooklyn last time, so we were determined to definitely not let that happen again. The ladies really buckled down and did a great job.”

    Brooklyn’s Delaney David scored a career-high 26 points in the first meeting between the two Chagrin Valley Conference Metro Division rivals but managed just nine against the motivated Blue Devils on Wednesday. Independence also held Brooklyn standout Shariah Gailes to just seven points after allowing her to score 19 in the first match-up.

    The Hurricanes held an 18-17 advantage at the break, but the Blue Devils began to create offense from its defense and when on to outscore Brooklyn in the second half, 30-16.

    “I think we developed a better sense of reading what the defense is doing to us and how we can attack it, and I think we did a good job of that,” McMahon said. “It makes it easier when maybe the offense isn’t clicking so much when you have that solid defense behind you.”

    Paige Priebe, who led the Blue Devils with 14 points, drained a pair of 3-pointers to kickstart the offense.

    Independence went on to score 16 points in the quarter and pulled away from the Hurricanes.

    Kara DeSmith and Addie Walker both converted 3-pointers in the fourth quarter to keep the offense humming.

    DeSmith finished with nine points while Walker and Cat Rieger both contributed with eight. Casey Adams pitched in with six, and Emily Gibbons scored two points in the win.

    “(Our offense) is like the old pony express,” McMahon said. “We hand it off to one girl and then this girl has a big game the next day and then she hands it off. They just keep working together to make something that is greater than the sum of its parts, so to speak. It’s fun to watch them share the ball and to really recognize what openings are there.”

    Genesis Caraballo scored a game-high 17 points for the Hurricanes.

    With the win, Independence improved to 11-7 overall and 4-5 in the Metro Division while Brooklyn dropped to 12-6, 6-3.

    The two teams will settle their 1-1 season series on Feb. 15 when Brooklyn hosts Independence in a sectional semifinal.



    Steve Hare
    Steve Hare
    The creator and publisher of, Hare has covered high school sports in Northeast Ohio since 1997. He began as a correspondent for the Lake County News Herald, where he contributed until 2011, primarily covering high school football and wrestling. In 1999, Hare began writing for, a member of the network of high school and college sports web sites. He focuses on covering Notre Dame football recruiting. was created in 2004 and was a member of the network until 2012. The site's original purpose was to cover Ohio high school football and recruiting news but since has grown to cover all sports and to provide sports information services to high school athletic programs and individual teams. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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