The Brookfield girls' basketball team hung right with a talented, two-loss Highland side on Monday night before the wheels fell off of the bus. The 'Dogs fell 73-49, and with the loss, they drop to .500 at 9-9 and 0-3 within the Clarence Cannon Conference.
"Our conference is as talented as anybody, and every single team in the conference is over .500 by a few games," Brookfield coach Tony Fairchild said. "Games like tonight will prepare us for the kind of opponents we'll face moving forward, and we'd really like to have an opportunity to move up the conference standings and get a decent seed within our district."
The Bulldogs trailed 15-13 through one quarter of play, and took just a 37-26 deficit into the halftime break. Highland used a massive 23-6 third quarter to break the game wide open. For moments in the fourth quarter, the game was played under running-clock rules.
Rylee Sensenich led the Bulldogs with 18 points, including railing four three-pointers. Kaylie Stufflebean hit three three-pointers en route to a 12 point evening, and Cassi Conard finished with 11. Stufflebean's minutes in the second half were stunted when she picked up her fourth foul early on.
Highland seniors, guard Kaitlin Benson and forward Kennedy Flanagan, have committed to play at Columbia College and Western Illinois, respectively. Flanagan was responsible for a game-high 19 points on Monday night.
"When you have a point guard of Benson's caliber and a girl who can go inside and outside like Flanagan, you have to kind of pick your poison," Fairchild said. "It all snowballed there on us in the third quarter."
By the time of this publication, Brookfield will have played South Shelby at home on Tuesday evening. The Bulldogs then face Macon at home on Friday for their senior night.