Beating a team three times in one season is difficult. Ask a number of coaches in the past, present, and even future about that topic. The Mattoon Green Wave girls, ranked No. 10 in the Class 3A rankings by the Associated Press and No. 3 by MaxPreps, will have to travel to Mahomet-Seymour in Apollo Conference action. The Green Wave own two wins that were a combined eight points. This is not going to be easy.
Here is the preview of tonight’s game.
Team Records: Mattoon (17-1, 6-0) @ Mahomet-Seymour (13-3, 3-2)
Where: Mahomet-Seymour High School
Tickets: Tickets can be purchased at Mahomet-Seymour High School
School Size: Mattoon (930), Mahomet-Seymour (943)
JV Tip-Off: 6:00 p.m.
Varsity Tip-Off: 7:30 p.m.
Opponent’s History: Garrett Risley enters his second full season as the coach of the girls’ program. Before Risley, Nathan Seal coached the Bulldogs for 20 years and accumulated a 296-266 overall record with one Regional Championship. Risley is a 2012 graduate of Mahomet-Seymour where his father, Jim, directed the girls’ track team to a Class 1A state championship in 1997. Risley is a former assistant football coach, pole vaulters coach, and a four-year assistant on the boys’ basketball team. As a freshman boys coach, he compiled a 22-20 record.
Mahomet-Seymour’s Past Results: Both Mahomet-Seymour and Mattoon played two times at the Mattoon Holiday Tournament. Mattoon came out victorious both times. The first time was a 52-49 nailbiter. Then, the Green Wave defeated the Bulldogs 48-43 in the championship game.
“We’re looking forward to another opportunity to compete with a great Mattoon team,” said Risley. “We’ve learned a lot about ourselves from the two games we’ve played before this one and those games forced us all to look in the mirror to find out what we can each do to get to the next level.”
Mahomet-Seymour’s Top Players: The top player on the team appears to be 5-foot-5 senior guard Cayla Koerner. At the Thanksgiving Tournament, she was named the Most Valuable Player, after amassing 68 points, 29 steals and six rebounds over three games. She leads the team with 11 three-pointers and 12.4 points per game. Among other key players include Nicole Taylor, Ivie Juarez (leading rebounder), and Durbin Thomas. Koerner, Taylor, and Juarez all made the All-Tournament Team at MHS.
Mahomet-Seymour’s Team Stats: In the championship game, Juarez led the Bulldogs with 14 points, while Koerner added 12 points. Mahomet-Seymour is averaging 59.0 points per game and allowing 33.8 points.
Mattoon’s Past Results: After defeating Mahomet-Seymour in the title game, Mattoon posted a 50-44 win over Teutopolis, which is ranked No. 7 overall in the Class 2A AP rankings. On Saturday, Mattoon remained undefeated in the conference with a 72-11 win over Charleston.
Mattoon’s Team Stats: In the first meeting, Ramage scored 24 points, while Lilly Ghere added 17 points. Then, Ramage earned Tournament MVP with 30 points, which included scoring her 2,000th career point. Mattoon is currently riding a 13-game winning streak. The Green Wave are scoring 63.3 points per game while allowing 34.1 points.
What Mahomet-Seymour Said: “To start playing at a higher level, we all just need to play within ourselves and limit our mistakes,” said Risley. “If we can do that, the rest will take care of itself.”
What Mattoon Said: “Mahomet-Seymour is a very good basketball team,” said coach Amanda Aydt. “I am so proud of our players for coming to practice every day ready to work hard and get better.”