“A 15-point lead!”

Washington 46, Morton’s Lady Potters 37

Again forced to watch from afar, meaning from home with my dog KO, your techno-bumbling reporter begins with three confessions:

1) I missed the first half entirely, 2) the streaming video finally arrived as a blur out here in the woods, and 3) the Lady Potters, already blurry, were so tiny on my PC monitor that I couldn’t tell Katie Krupa from stars of yore, say Peyton Dearing, or even Brooke Bisping, somehow young again.

So I have no idea what happened this afternoon. Just that it was not good for the Potters. There’d be a red road-uniform Morton blur mixing into a white home-uniform Washington blur until suddenly both blurs were, for an unknown reason, running the other way.  The scoreboard told me the white blurs succeeded in scoring more often than the red blurs, though I never saw a ball go through a hoop at either end, the hoops lost in shadows.

Soon enough, the white home-uniform blurs had stretched a 27-17 halftime lead to 36-21 late in the third. That’s when a play-by-play broadcaster from the hometown video crew said, “The Panthers are putting up a tough defense against the Lady Potters offense.” Washington’s tough defense amounted to two and three defenders harassing Krupa anytime she had the ball. Still, with relentless purpose, Krupa scored 25 points. Problem was, the rest of the Potters accounted for only a dozen. No one wins many games that way.

At that 36-21 spot, an announcer’s voice went up an octave. “A 15-point lead,” he said, and, in case his voice didn’t reach Morton and its surroundings, he raised the pitch another notch, “A 15-point lead!” He could not be blamed for the long-suppressed bursts of excitement. It had been seven years (and 13 losses) since Washington last defeated Morton
On an 11-2 run with Krupa scoring 8 points, the Potters closed within 38-32 with 4:13 to play. From there, though, they couldn’t score again until the game’s last minute.

Morton had won 64 straight games in the Mid-Illini Conference before Thursday night’s loss at Pekin. It plays Washington again Tuesday night in the Potterdome.

Krupa’s 25 came on nine field goals (one a late 3-pointer) and six free throws. Addy Engel had 5 points, Raquel Frakes 3, and Maggie Hobson and Cailyn Crowley had 2 apiece.

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