During every free second she could find, Immaculata point guard Lainey Bell sucked in as much oxygen as possible Friday.
In what resembled more of a track meet than a basketball game, the Lady Raiders hosted Riverside in the teams’ first game back from winter break.
Mirroring one another, each squad deployed a full-court press for most of the contest’s 40 minutes, meaning Bell was constantly on the move. While the senior did an admirable job trying to keep up with the breakneck action, eventually the pace wore her and the rest of her teammates down.
After holding a slim 25-22 advantage at half, Imac lost 54-47 to the visiting Lady Cyclones.
“I think it got to the point that we were just tired at the end,” Imac coach Terry Jordan said. “But besides that, we had open shots from the outside that we missed and being a perimeter-oriented team, that will always hurt.”
Following a slow start offensively, the two conference foes found their footing in the second and third quarters. It was the third period that Riverside made its move, outscoring its hosts 19-13 to overtake the lead.
In the fourth, the Lady Cyclones continued to separate from Immaculata and ultimately won by a seven-point margin.
Bell finished the game with 20 points while Kasey Cannon and Ellie Wolk added seven points each. Mary Kate Wolken chipped in six, Danielle Sachse threw in three and Lauren Vardiman had four points.
“Just as I’ve been all year, Lainey impressed me quite a bit with her leadership,” Jordan said. “I think that now, on top of that, she is accepting the challenge of being a scorer and that means great things for us if she continues to do that.”
Imac, 2-3, will host Oskaloosa at 6 p.m. Tuesday.
Lady Pioneers take care of SM East
It didn’t take long for the Leavenworth girls’ basketball team to record its first win of 2013.
In fact, it took just one try.
On Friday, the Lady Pioneers went on the road and squashed Shawnee Mission East 58-42.
“We are slowly putting things together,” Leavenworth coach Derek Zeck said. “We played really well inside. Utilizing that inside-out approach we’ve been talking about we were really able to get the ball inside the paint and take advantage of our size.”
The win puts Leavenworth at 4-3.
“Tyler (Johnson), Rachel (Blackburn), Tashia (Jones) all had big games for us offensively,” Zeck said. “Defensively, I was really happy with the effort. We held them to just seven points in the third quarter, all from the free throw line. Our depth and athleticism really just wore them down.”
Page 2 of 2 - The Lady Pioneers will host Olathe South at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Ridge grinds out road victory
Though it didn’t come easy nor pretty, Pleasant Ridge girls’ basketball coach Mike Koontz ultimately had no argument for his team’s first game back.
“We did what we had to do to win,” Koontz said. “We gutted out a win, a conference road win and that is all that matters.”
In its first game back from the holiday break, the Lady Rams played sloppy according to their coach. Yet despite the rustiness, PR was still able to build a 27-22 advantage after two quarters of play.
That became a 10-point edge in the third quarter and eventually a 48-39 win.
“The defensive pressure wasn’t there for us tonight and we fouled way too much, but like I said, a win is a win,” Koontz said. “I thought we did a decent job running our offense and getting good looks inside.”
Benefiting from that inside focus was Ashten Langley, who racked up 17 points. Beth Doty added seven, Alyssa Crook six and Lauren Zule pitched in four. Jordan Adams, Abby Reed and Kelsey Carpenter all finished with four points.
PR, 4-1, will host McLouth at 6 p.m. Tuesday.