It's hard to find something wrong with a 34-point win, but that is sometimes the job of a basketball coach.
On Tuesday, Pleasant Ridge girls' coach Mike Koontz had the privilege of doing such a thing.
"To start the game, I thought we were pretty flat honestly," Koontz said. "We didn't pick it up until the final minute of the first quarter, so that wasn't the greatest. But when we did finally turn up the intensity, we got out on them pretty well."
After the sluggish start, the Lady Rams left little in their wake when they dispatched visiting McLouth 57-23. The victory pushed Ridge to 5-1 on the season.
"Once we woke up defensively, we were able to get a lot of run outs and easy buckets in the first half," Koontz said.
That fast-break strategy earned PR a 35-9 halftime edge, which quickly ballooned to 20-plus after a 17-point third quarter. The benches were cleared in the fourth by both teams as Pleasant Ridge cruised to the blow-out win.
"In the second half, they went to a zone and we did a pretty good job against that so overall I was pleased offensively," the Rams coach said.
Ashten Langley led the team with 12 points, followed by Kelsey Carpenter's 10, Jordan Adam's 10 and Beth Doty added nine points. Carly Simonis also contributed nine points.
PR will travel to Maur Hill for a 6 p.m. game Friday.
Immaculata bounces back with win
After suffering through a 58-35 loss to Maranatha Monday night, the Immaculata girls' basketball team rebounded nicely Tuesday at Oskaloosa.
Led by a stout defensive effort, the Lady Raiders held the Lady Bears to just 26 total points in route to a 39-26 victory.
"We slowed down and took care of the ball a heck of a lot better today than yesterday," Imac coach Terry Jordan said. "We defended well, didn't overplay and fixed some rotation problems we were having."
Defense keyed Imac to the win as the squad gave up just 12 first-half points and then 14 in the second. That effort allowed the squad a chance to slow down offensively, which Jordan felt delivered more productive shots.
"We got into some more half court sets and got the ball inside," the Raiders coach said. "We keep wondering why we are a perimeter team and it's because we don't make an effort to get the ball in the paint. Tonight we did and they took better shots because of it."
Kasey Cannon led the team with 10 points, followed by Grace Parker dropping nine points and Lainey Bell pitching in eight. Georgia Dean and Lauren Vardiman each had five.
Immaculata, 3-4, will host Jackson Heights at 6 p.m. Friday.
Lady Spires make it two straight
Not every game is pretty and Tuesday the Saint Mary women's basketball team experienced that first hand.
In a contest that saw over 40 fouls called and the teams combined to shoot 69 free throws, the Lady Spires grinded out its second straight win by beating Manhattan College 73-69.
"It was a tough game," USM coach Mike Basler said. "A lot of fouls, no real flow but in the end, our persistence and resilience paid off.
"We had some players make some plays when we needed it. Korbynn Stallbaumer and Tracie Weege both delivered big 3-pointers while Adelyn Ezeh delivered a big assist late for us. Our kids delivered tonight."
Tight throughout, the Lady Spires parlayed a 32-28 halftime lead into a four-point victory thanks to its quality offensive execution down the stretch. Leading the team in that effort and scoring in general was Jennifer Harmon with 17 points and Bailey Hooker, who had 14.
Saint Mary, now 6-11 overall, will jump back into conference play when it hosts Tabor at 6 p.m. Thursday.
Leavenworth fall to Olathe South
School just started back up, but Tuesday was a midterm of sorts for the Leavenworth girls.
Facing Olathe South for the second time in a month, the Lady Pioneers played toe-to-toe with the state's fourth ranked team for much of the first half.
Though the undefeated Falcons responded in the second half to the tune of a 44-34 final, the 10-point Leavenworth loss is tangible evidence of the team's growth from just a few weeks ago according to LHS coach Derek Zeck.
The first meeting was a 25-point blowout.
"I'm not saying moral victory, but you have a brand new system and brand new players, and it's going to take time," Zeck said.
Sophomore forward Rachel Blackburn provided much of the offense, dropping in 14 points, most of which came down low.
"We have three really good forwards in Tashia Jones, Rachel Blackburn, and Tyler Johnson," Zeck said. "Each game it's one of those three stepping up for us. Tonight it was Rachel."
The Lady Pioneers, 4-4, play Shawnee Mission North at 6 p.m. Friday.
- Ian Stanford
Lady Lions show improvement in loss
The Lansing girls' basketball team suffered another loss Tuesday night at Piper 52-30.
"I'm actually really proud of my girls," Lady Lions coach Christine Robinson said, "because we had a lot of positives tonight. We took a lot of steps in the right direction.
"I think we need to be more consistent on defense. One thing we need to improve is we need to make better passes. Besides that I was very pleased with our performance tonight."
Mikayla Zielinski led the ladies in scoring with 10 points followed by Jasmine Meyer with eight points.
Lansing hosts Basehor Linwood Friday at 5:45 p.m.
- James Howey