Tigers’ defense shines in BEC rout

by Matt Kraus
Review Co respondent


KAITLYNN NEAR of Howards Grove drives to the hoop against Cedar Grove’s Morgan Green (25) in Tuesday’s BEC basketball game. The Tigers’ Sam Yancy (22) watches. – Photo by Terry Schaller KAITLYNN NEAR of Howards Grove drives to the hoop against Cedar Grove’s Morgan Green (25) in Tuesday’s BEC basketball game. The Tigers’ Sam Yancy (22) watches. – Photo by Terry Schaller HOWARDS GROVE – Despite shooting just 20 percent from the floor in the first half and seeing leading scorer [this season] Sam Yancy held scoreless, the Howards Grove girls basketball team beat the Cedar Grove-Belgium Rockets, 32-13, in Big East Conference play here Tuesday night.

The Tigers improved to a conference leading 6-0 (7-1 overall), while the Rockets dropped to 1-5 in conference (1-7 overall).

The Tigers came out of the locker room for the second half with a 15-4 lead. After a Cedar Grove miss, Addi Gerber hit a 17-foot jumper. Kaitlynn Near scored in the lane on the next possession for a 19-4 Tigers’ lead a minute into the second half.

With 6½ minutes remaining in the game, the Tigers led 20-4 and Gerber took over. Scoring on four of the next five Tigers’ possessions, Gerber cut to the hoop and scored on a pass from Yancy, hit a 15-foot jumper, made a put-back on an offensive rebound, and sank a 12-foot baseline jumper, to give the Tigers a 28-6 lead.

The Rockets went on a 7-0 run with a three-pointer by Melanie Obbink, and baskets from Amanda Meerdink and Autumn Beutel, cutting the deficit to 30-13.

Olivia Stauss closed the scoring on a pass from Schaller for the 32-13 Tigers’ victory.

Tiger senior guard Ashley Reinemann opened the scoring 1½ minutes into the game with two free throws. Neither team scored until the 10-minute mark when the Rockets tied it at 2-2.

The Tigers scored on their next three possessions, Reinemann and Near made free throws and Near scored on a drive to the hoop for a 6-2 lead.

With 3:30 remaining in the half, Near scored in the lane. Brittany Schaller followed with a three-pointer to give the Tigers an 11-2 lead.

Olivia Stauss converted a layup on a drive to the hoop with two minutes remaining in the half. The Tigers’ full-court pressure forced a Rockets’ turnover. Gerber responded with a basket in the lane to give the Tigers a 15-2 lead.

Rocket senior guard Liz Bruggink answered with a score in the lane for the 15-4 halftime score.

The Rockets committed 13 turnovers in the first half (20 overall), including six directly related to the Tigers’ full-court press after made baskets.

“We pride ourselves on our defense and we played solid defense again tonight. Even though Sam struggled from the field she still had [a team-high] 13 rebounds.”

“As a team, we struggled shooting tonight. At some point we need to be able to score. We shot better in the second half,” said Tigers head coach Heidi Georgeff.

Gerber had a team-high 14 points and four steals. Schaller led in assists with four. Gerber also contributed eight rebounds.


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