Girls basketball: Answering the Bell: LC forward scomes up big
ST. JOHN — Jessica Bell says she was embarrassed by her six-point performance in Lake Central’s 19-point loss to Merrillville last week.
In the six days since the loss to the unbeaten Pirates, the hard-playing Bell has been on a mission.
“Coach (Marc) Urban told me I have to look to be more of a scorer because I wasn’t doing enough offensively,’’ the Indians’ senior forward said. “I took what he said to heart. I thought I didn’t contribute enough to my team in that game. I knew I definitely should have contributed more. I took a lot of that loss on myself. I wanted to come out and prove to everyone that I could be more a scorer for us and win these games.’’
Bell demonstrated her offensive ability by scoring a game-high 19 points in LC’s 69-36 Duneland Athletic Conference win over Chesterton Thursday night.
In an easy win over Valparaiso on Tuesday, she scored a season-high 26.
“I’ve been able to score because of the unselfishness of my teammates,’’ said Bell, who hit 8 of 12 shots, snared a game-high 11 rebounds, blocked three shots and added a pair of assists and steals.
“I definitely like the way we’re playing together right now. I think these last two games were big for us.’’
Bell had plenty of help against the outmanned Trojans (4-14, 2-11) as Lindsay Kusbel finished with 13 points and six rebounds. Four other players scored at least seven points. The Indians (12-7, 9-4) shot an incredible 73.7 percent the first half (14 of 19) and 70.7 for the game (29 of 41), had 17 assists and played tough defense.
“I think collectively we’re getting better at buying into getting more stops and we’re taking more pride in being a good defensive team,’’ Urban said.
Lake Central held Chesterton scoreless the first quarter, taking a 16-0 lead.
“You just can’t start a game that way and dig yourself a hole like that,’’ Trojans coach Jack Campbell said. “They hit about every shot they took. If it wasn’t a layup, it was a 3.’’
Caroline Puntillo led Chesterton with 18 points.