Edwardsville's Criste'on Waters had an amazing game on Tuesday night, collecting 19 rebounds, 13 in the first half, and scoring 11 points against Belleville East. Waters completely dominated the boards underneath the basket. (Photo by Dan Brannan)Kate Martin led the Tigers in scoring on Tuesday with 19 points. (Photo by Dan Brannan)EDWARDSVILLE - The Edwardsville girls’ basketball team utilized a loss to Collinsville for motivation and came out with a ferocious defensive effort, stomping Belleville East 54-33 on Tuesday night at Lucco-Jackson Gymnasium.

Coach Lori Blade couldn’t be happier how her girls responded to a 70-68 loss last week to Collinsville in practice, then came out and played with such veracity on Tuesday. The victory was the 599th career win for Blade in her basketball coaching career in both Edwardsville and Carrollton.

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“We fought back and I thought our defense was really good tonight,” Coach Blade said. “That was all I wanted to see. I wanted us to focus our effort on the defensive end and we did. It was just a great overall effort. We dominated the boards in the first half. We had good transition in the first quarter and that was back to normal for how we normally play.”

Blade was pleased with her team’s start in the game, rolling to a 19-2 lead with eight points from both Kate Martin and Makenzie Silvey. Edwardsville led 21-7 at the end of the first quarter and 30-13 at the half. Edwardsville led 45-21 at the end of three and the Lancers outscored the Tigers 12-9 in the final quarter for the 54-33 tally.

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Aaliyah Box dishes off a pass for the Tigers.“We got off to a quick start and we hammered the boards,” she said. “We still have to find our way a little bit. Belleville East's guards are a little bit smaller and we needed to take advantage of that.”

Criste'on Waters hauled down 19 rebounds in the game with 13 in the first half. She also contributed 11 points. Martin paced the Tigers with 19 points and had six rebounds. Pranger had 14 points and nine rebounds. Silvey added eight points and Jasmine Bishop rounded out Edwardsville's scoring with two points. Kaylah Rainey had seven points to lead the Lancers, while Myriah Haywood had six points.

Edwardsville’s girls return to action at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Belleville against Belleville West.

Rachel Pranger fires in a basket during the Belleville East contest. (Photo by Dan Brannan)

Makenzie Silvey looks for an open teammate.

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