Girls Basketball: Becky DeRuiter leads Chicago Christian past Evergreen ParkAli Tanis (24) Chicago Christian High School battles Monica Falconer (15) Evergreen Park High School during varsity action Tuesday night November 29, 2011 in Evergreen Park, Illinois. | Art Vassy~Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 29, 2011 8:44PM
Becky DeRuiter was so busy helping Chicago Christian’s volleyball team to a second-place finish in Class 2A she had time for only one basketball practice.
That didn’t mean she wasn’t ready to play basketball.
“Yeah, I got right into it,” DeRuiter said with a smile after the Knights’ 51-20 victory Tuesday night over host Evergreen Park.
DeRuiter led the way for Christian (3-2) with 12 points, 17 rebounds and five assists.
She was key for the Knights during a 12-0 start that included three-point baskets by Zoe Rozich and Emma Baldacci.
Lauren Kuipers and Briana Smith added eight points each for the Knights.
Megan Pfister (8 points) and Megan Beckow (6) paced Evergreen Park (1-4).
DeRuiter, who averaged 11 points and 10 rebounds last season, made an immediate impact just two days after joining the team, scoring 16 points and pulling down 12 rebounds in their first contest against Shepard.
Starting basketball late has been the norm for DeRuiter, who was a key member of Knights volleyball teams that have finished first once and second twice in Class 2A over the past three seasons.
“It was a little tough missing being with the team,” she said. “But it was harder last year because we had a whole new offense (under then-new coach Linda Stuursma). So going into this year I knew a little more what we were doing and I just kind of went back into the flow of basketball.”
The Knights, who are deep in senior leadership, are looking to improve on a 7-20 campaign in 2010-11. They couldn’t have looked much better at the outset of Tuesday’s contest, hitting seven of their first eight shots.
“I think we have really good potential this year,” DeRuiter said. “We did a lot of stuff over the summer. Everyone was there, so we got the team camaraderie together.”
On the flip side, Evergreen Park has just one senior (Krystyna Orlowski) and a new coach in Bruce Scaduto, who came over from the boys team.
“We’re young, and the numbers are down a little bit,” Scaduto said. “We’re just trying to build with what we have. We have one senior, and she’s the only one right now who kind of handles the ball with a little confidence out there.
“We’re just trying to get better and better each day. That’s our goal.”