Geneseo begins the postseason on a nine-game winning streak

Chris Steele
Abbi Barickman, left, looks for a passing lane during Geneseo's game against Sycamore.

The Geneseo girls’ basketball team finished the regular season on a nine-game winning streak with victories over Rochelle and LaSalle-Peru.

Geneseo at Rochelle

The Lady Leafs’ defense showed how much they have improved at locking teams down in the past month.

Geneseo’s defense set the tone early during a 56-39 victory over the Hubs in Rochelle on Feb. 6.

Geneseo held Rochelle star Abby Lundquist to just three points in the first half, and the Lady Leafs roared to a 27-9 lead by halftime.

“It’s hard to beat Keeli Frerichs one-on-one defensively,” Geneseo Coach Scott Hardison said. “If Keeli has four people working with her, it’s a much stronger unit. I think it’s better and more sustainable and our goal is to keep going that route.”

Geneseo had another strong effort from Maddi Barickman who finished with a team-high 14 points including four 3-pointers.

Hardison believes Maddi’s breakout performance starts with her being more aggressive going to the basket.

“She’s attacked the rim better in the last five or six games,” Hardison said. “It keeps her defenders more honest and not be able to see her as a catch and shoot player now. I think that’s opening the 3-point shot for her even more.”

Geneseo’s Josie Brown racked up 11 points, and Kammie Ludwig scored six points.

Abbi Barickman shot 4-of-6 from the free throw line and she finished with nine points.

Anna Pierce and Kaitlyn Webster each finished with two points, and Frerichs made 1-of-2 from the charity stripe.

The Lady Leafs’ Lauren Pardoe, Hannah Himmelman and Taylor DeSplinter each scored three points.

Geneseo at LaSalle-Peru

The Lady Leafs finished the regular season with their offense getting red hot during a 74-42 victory over the Lady Cavaliers in LaSalle-Peru on Feb. 9.

Maddi Barickman was electric scoring a game-high 22 points and making five 3-pointers.

With Geneseo leading 36-20 at halftime, the Lady Leafs continued to pour on the points outscored L-P 24-14 in the third quarter.

Frerichs tallied 12 points, and Brown and Himmelman each scored eight points.

Abbi Barickman and Ludwig each scored six points, and Webster finished with four points.

The Lady Leafs’ Eden McAvoy, Ali Rapps, DeSplinter and Pardoe each scored two points.

Geneseo finished the regular season 24-5 overall and finished runner-up in the Northern Illinois Big 12 West with a 10-2 record.

“We are feeling good about ourselves, but we aren’t satisfied yet,” Hardison said.

Geneseo will strive to become just the third team in school history to reach 25 wins when they host the Class 3A Geneseo Regional semifinal on Wednesday, Feb. 13

The winner of the Geneseo and Macomb semifinal game will play the winner of the Canton and Dunlap semifinal game in the Geneseo regional championship game on Friday, Feb. 15 at 7 p.m.