girls ready for district
The Lady Pirates had a full schedule of MEC Conference
games this week with a makeup game on Wednesday against
We started off Monday with a loss to Smithville, but
played well losing by seven points only being outscored
by the Warriors by one point in the second half. We played
pretty much an even game most of the way. Smithville's
Crystal Holbrook was a big 6'3" difference inside
as she posted up and hit from various places in and around
the lane. We tried to keep the ball away from her but
she moves well without the ball and gets into good position.
She had a game high 19 points. While Tara Porter, the
Lady Pirate point guard did some damage herself with 18
points no other significant points from anyone else and
just fell short offensively. Again our shooting percentage
was a low 23 percent.
We did a good job on defense containing the outside shooting
and three point shots of their guards. We certainly had
the opportunity to score and missed some easy shots both
inside and outside.
Defensively we matched up with their speed and pressed
and broke their press effectively. Megan Nichols pulled
down 10 rebounds and Cassie Philipe had nine. Tara Porter
had seven steals and we forced several turnovers with
our defense. Except for a cold shooting night we played
a good game and challenged a strong team.
Wednesday night the Lady Pirates hosted Savannah, undefeated
in conference and placing second in state the last three
years. We were ready for the challenge and played a great
game, taking a 8-0 lead and forcing a Savage time out.
We were hitting the boards and getting some fast breaks.
Nichols, Praiswater, and Philipe all scored in the first
quarter to give us a good run. Savannah came roaring back
with the inside seven points from 6'3" all conference,
all district post Nikki Garner. She was really tough to
stop-big and physical and deadly in the paint. We held
on to a 12-11 first quarter lead. Senior guard Angela
Campbell picked up six more points inside to give Savannah
momentum and a ten lead going into the half 33-22.
It was so hard to stop their outside perimeter shooters
and still double team the big post. We needed a good third
quarter but the shots wouldn't fall and we got farther
behind. Savannah had a 48-22 lead at the end of the third
quarter and thought they were out of reach, but we pressed
and picked up the pace and found ourselves back within
six points forcing another Savannah time out. I knew with
just a few minutes left they would stall and force us
to foul. We still out scored them 19-12 in the fourth
quarter but it wasn't enough and the Savages remained
undefeated in the MEC with a 60-49 win. We played a hard,
physical game and gave them everything they wanted-taking
a lead and making a great comeback in the fourth. I was
really proud of the way we played against a very tough
Megan Nichols had 10 points followed by Philipi and A.
Praiswater with 11 each. Philipi pulled down 11 rebounds
and Praiswater six. Freshman Kathryn McGee had five points
and four steals and played a great defensive game. Sophomore
Brandie Scott was all over the court with great hustle
and cracked heads with a Savannah girl towards the end
of the fourth. Brandie suffered a mild concussion and
had to sit out the Benton game the following night. Hopefully
we'll have her back for Monday's district repeat game
with Benton. We played well but again couldn't get that
shooting percentage above 25 percent-way too low to pull
off a big win over a good opponent. We did hit 17/25 from
the line hitting 68 percent. Sophomore post Stevie Grabau
came off the bench with a much needed eight points and
kept us alive and in the hunt. Stevie has height and potential
and will definitely be making a difference in the next
The Lady Pirates closed out the regular season with back-to-back
games having to play Benton away following the physical
Savannah conference game.
After defeating Benton in the Kearney Tourney the Cardinals
were a little better prepared for our aggressive press
and defense. They also had a great shooting night hitting
40 percent from the field and 70 percent from the line.
We hit a low 25 percent from the field, but hit 83 percent
from the line. I wish they would have called a few more
fouls-we were hot from the line. Benton jumped out to
a 10-4 lead as the Lady Pirates felt like there was a
lid on the goal at their end of the gym.
Second quarter wasn't much better for the Pirates as
they still struggled offensively finding the basket. Defensively
we held Benton to only 38 points stopping the guards and
two of their dominated scorers. Two of their guards picked
up 11 points each for high honors, while we held the posts
to seven points.
It was a very physical game and we were sluggish from
the Monday game with Smithville and the night before with
Savannah. We just didn't have the speed and hustle we
usually have and it showed up both on the offensive and
defensive end of the court. Benton defeated us 38-25.
We look forward to the district Monday night re-match
with them and this time we will be more rested and will
hopefully have Brandie Scott back in the lineup.
Senior captain Morgan Nichols led the Pirates in points
with eight and rebounds with nine followed by six points
from Philipi and seven rebounds from both Philipi and