|Lady Jays survive for 1st win|
|Monday, December 03, 2012 3:29 PM|
By JIM METCALFE
ST. MARYS — St. John’s and St. Marys Memorial were both looking for their first win of 2012-13 when the two girls basketball teams met up Saturday night at The Horseshoe of St. Marys High School.
As expected, neither team could really gain much of an advantage and it came down to the very end.
Senior Katie Vorst hit a 3-point play at 35.6 seconds and classmate Jessica Recker hit a free throw with 12.2 ticks on the board to give the Lady Blue Jays a 38-36 triumph.
The Lady Roughriders led 28-25 entering the fateful fourth and a free throw by Erika Angstmann made it 29-25. A trade of baskets (Vorst and Kelly Heirkamp) left it a 4-point spread. Vorst — who dominated the fourth period with nine markers out of a game-high 21, throwing in 15 boards for a double-double and adding four steals — scored again to get her team within 31-29. Two throws by Kelsey Rohrbach made it 33-29 at 3:19. Sophomore Rebekah Fischer hit a huge 3-ball from the right side at 2:45 for the visitors but Molly Albert answered with her own to again make it a 4-point margin. Vorst took a lob pass from freshman Sydney Fischbach for a layin at 1:14 and then after a Memorial miscue (19 for the game, 16 for the Jays), the duo repeated the sequence at 35.6. With Vorst adding the toss for the Jays’ first lead since late in the third. After Albert missed the front end of the bonus at the 24-second mark, Memorial fouled. Twice, Recker missed the front end of the bonus but the Jays got the board; on the third time, Recker hit the first but not the second and Memorial got the rebound. They missed two shots in the last six ticks and Vorst got the board on the second try to seal the deal.
Both coaches agreed that making plays at the end was the key.
“That didn’t happen our first two games. That was what we look to our seniors for — their leadership in those situations — and we got it tonight,” Jays mentor Dan J. Grothouse noted. “Katie was tremendous on both ends of the court and on the glass. We need her to be that way. It wasn’t just her, either; when we needed a big stop, a key rebound or a basket, we seemed to get it.”
For Memorial coach Kelly Fulmer, it was a familiar scenario.
“That’s what we have to figure out; how to make big plays at the end in close games. We were in position to win but just didn’t come through,” she added. “We haven’t been in a lot of close games the last couple of years and you have to go through it to figure it out. We lost by a wide margin against Fort Recovery but tonight and Kalida (Thursday), we were there. We just have to keep learning and improving.”
St. Marys came out in a full-court press and then dropped into a 2-3 zone and it worked pretty well in the opening canto. They held the Jays to 4-of-12 shooting (14-of-39 for the game, 2-of-8 treys, for 35.9%). Memorial was slightly better — 5-of-11 (15-of-35 overall, 2-of-4 3s, for 42.9%). They led 11-4 before Vorst hit a baseline drive at 1:20 and a power drive at 50 ticks to get her team within 11-8.
The Jays’ struggled mightily in the second period, going scoreless in the first 4:40 in turning it over five times, missing one shot and two freebies. However, thanks to their man-to-man defense doing a better job of the hosts’ pick-and-roll attack, St. Marys could only build a 17-8 lead. St. John’s closed on an 8-0 run, capped by a trifecta from the right wing by Recker (7 points, 4 steals) with 20 ticks showing, for a 17-16 deficit.
Vorst tallied just 29 seconds into the third period for the Jays’ first lead. That just started a quarter that saw four lead changes and a tie, with the largest lead being five. A drive to the hoop by Reagan Aller (15 markers, 4 boards) — limited by some foul trouble — at 3:15, were the last points by either team and gave Memorial a 28-25 edge entering the finale.
St. John’s finished 8-of-14 at the line (57.1%), grabbing 33 caroms (12 offensive) and adding 12 fouls. They host Van Wert 6 p.m. Tuesday (junior varsity tip).
“We had to slow ourselves down against their pressure. We were going a little too quick,” Grothouse added. “When we did that, we moved the ball around and took good shots. We just need to knock more of them down consistently. Defensively, we did a nice job. This was a big win on the road and a total team effort.”
Memorial canned 4-of-9 singles (44.4%), grabbed 21 boards (3 offensive) as Angstmann had six and Rohrbach five and totaled 16 errors. They visit Shawnee Thursday.
In the JV matchup, St. John’s shot a cold 7-of-22 from the stripe in faltering 17-15.
Sophomore Halie Benavidez led the Lady Jays (1-2) with six points; Lindi Cisco had seven for the Lady Roughriders (1-2).