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SULLIVAN -- Esther Miller poured in 25 points for Sullivan Monday as they faced Teutopolis, but the Wooden Shoes responded with too many weapons as Teutopolis won 48-42. 

Teutopolis led 27-16 at halftime but the Redskins played strong defense in the third and held the Wooden Shoes to seven points. 

"We played a tremendous second half defensively. Anytime you can hold a T-town team to single digits is a good day," Sullivan coach Sheri McCain said. "I know the scoreboard has us losing, however, our girls played their hearts out tonight."

In the fourth, Teutopolis found their footing to take the six-point victory. 

Olivia Niemerg led the Wooden Shoes with 17 and Claire Bushur added nine points. 

"In my mind, one single stat was the deciding factor in the outcome of the game and that was free throws," McCain said. "We lost by six and we were 12-for-21 from the line. I am still very proud of this team. This time last year we lost to T-town 59-29."

Altamont 74, Dieterich 30

ALTAMONT -- Altamont had five girls scoring in double figures against Dieterich as the Indians jump out to an early lead. 

Altamont led 21-10 at the end of the first quarter and 47-15 at halftime. 

JoAnna Schultz and Leah Mayhaus led the Indians with 14 points each. Brooke Runge, Mary Guse and Ellie McManaway each put in 11 points. 

I thought tonight we did a really good job of continuing our balanced scoring efforts. Looking at our boxes throughout the last seven games, we’ve had multiple point leaders," Altamont coach Katie Lurkins said. "Tonight, we had five kids in double digits and that really speaks to the way the girls work together and move the ball around."

For Altamont (6-1), Schultz had 11 rebounds and Runge and Tinley Mette both had 7 assists. 

"Defensively, our focus was to play some solid, fundamental defense. We were able in the second half to work on a few new defensive approaches," Lurkins said. "I thought the girls responded really well to learning that on the fly. We did a really good job of getting up and down the court."

Charleston 64, Taylorville 54

CHARLESTON -- Charleston girls’ basketball coach Jeff Miller thought the Trojans took too many three-pointers and didn’t play good team defense. That’s what stuck out to Miller after the game as he lamented the lack of effort on the defensive end.

For Miller, Monday’s home and Apollo Conference opener seemed like a loss because of those factors. Even though Charleston did trail at halftime, the Trojans still won.

Charleston continued to take a good amount of three-pointers but this time the shots started to fall which helped the Trojans take the lead and then they pulled away in the third quarter.

Charleston held off Taylorville in the fourth quarter and the Trojans improved to 6-0 on the season, 1-0 in the Apollo, with a 64-54 victory.

Miller said the win wasn’t pretty but it was a win even though the team has a few things to work on.

“We had a rough start. I was disappointed in our defense today. I felt like we had only two or three girls show up defensively. Our first game you would’ve thought we would’ve played with more emotion. We came out and played flat,” Miller said. “Taylorville jumped all over us and made us look bad. They are a good team. This is one of those games that we have to learn from because we need to play better as a team on the defensive end and that’s the first time I’ve had to say that in a long time.”

Mattoon 61, Lincoln 38

MATTOON -- In the Apollo Conference and home opener for Mattoon, who finished third in the Pana Thanksgiving Tournament last Saturday, the Green Wave pulled away in the third quarter with a 10-0 run as they downed Lincoln.

Mattoon led just 31-24 after the first basket of the second half by Lincoln's 6-2 junior Leah Schneider. The Green Wave began the pivotal run with a three-pointer by freshman Mallory Ramage. Morgan Otto followed with a basket and Ramage hit another three, this one from the top of the key. Jordan Sapp's bucket made it 41-24 with 4:14 left in third. The Railsplitters didn't get closer than 16 the rest of the way.

"I am proud of our girls," said Mattoon coach Amanda Aydt. "They played hard the entire game. At halftime, we talked about being patient on the offensive end and looking for great shots instead of just settling for a shot. We talked about reversing the ball and making the defense work a little bit. The girls' did a great job of making that extra pass. Everyone did a good job of hitting their shots."

Mattoon struggled from the field in the first half going 10-of-31 (.323), but shot 13-of-23 (.565) in the second half, including 4-of-5 from beyond the three-point line in the third quarter.

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Reporter for Lee Enterprises Central Illinois.

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