Lady ‘Cats’ win streak reaches three
Members of the Basehor-Linwood girls' basketball team walked off the court with smiles on their faces following their win over Mill Valley.
They had plenty to smile about after winning their second game in a row, this time in convincing fashion.
The Bobcats, 2-1 after the victory, dominated their league rivals in every facet of the game in winning 52-31 Friday, Dec. 13.
However, their defense was the catalyst.
They used an effective full-court press to harass Mill Valley, which helped the Bobcats jump to an early lead that they would never relinquish.
Basehor-Linwood coach Mardy Robinson said their press was the difference in the game.
"I was very pleased with the way the girls ran the press," Robinson said. "We changed it around and tweaked it a bit, and it really made a difference. They did everything I asked them to do."
That defense came up big throughout the game. Even in the second quarter when the offense struggled to score a mere three points, their defense held Mill Valley to seven.
In a game that the Bobcats played well in, Robinson said the second quarter was a struggle.
"We played well overall," she said. "In the second quarter, we just had a tough time executing. If we put together four quarters every game, we will be tough to beat."
Because of that second quarter, the game was still within Mill Valley's reach at halftime. At that point, the Bobcats owned a 20-12 lead.
Once the third quarter began, however, the Bobcats quelled any hope Mill Valley had of coming back.
Basehor-Linwood opened the second half with an 8-1 run that started and ended with junior point guard Alex Jeannin. She dished out an assist and scored five points during the span. The exclamation mark to the run was her three-point shot that caused her to pump her fist in celebration.
"I talked to the girls about intensity coming out of the locker room after halftime and they stepped up their game," Robinson said. "Our press really worked well, and we caused a lot of turnovers."
Additionally, in the crucial third quarter, the Bobcats hit eight-of-10 free throws, which helped seal the victory. After three quarters, Basehor-Linwood led 34-17.
"Free throws always seem to be a crucial part of every game," Robinson said. "We shoot free throws every day in practice, and we always put the girls in pressure situations, so that they're ready."
That lead would expand in the fourth quarter and grow to its largest gap on a play by senior Tiffany Bates that made the team's bench erupt.
Bates, an interior player, grabbed a defensive rebound at the free throw line. She proceeded to go coast to coast for a layup, which sent Robinson to her feet and the score to 44-22.
The bucket accounted for two of Bates' game-high 13 points. She also had 5 rebounds.
Senior Aubrey Bittel was one rebound away from her second straight double-double. She had 10 points and nine rebounds.
Junior Kelly Schaffer was the third Bobcat in double figures with 10 points.
Bobcats 47, Tonganoxie 44
Tuesday night, the Lady 'Cats found themselves involved in another battle, but 13 points from Bittel and 11 more from Bates proved to be enough as BLHS held off the Tonganoxie and improved to 3-1.
The win was the third in a row for the Bobcats, who haven't lost since Dec. 6.
The Bobcats built a five point halftime lead with good defense and timely scoring.
That lead increased to 10 at the end of the third quarter, as BLHS outscored the Chieftains 15-10 in the third.
However, in the fourth quarter, Tonganoxie mounted a comeback, but the Bobcats remained poised and grabbed the victory.
Lindsay Cunningham chipped in six points, Alex Jeannin added five and Katie Burchfield contributed with four.
BLHS will play at 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 20, at home against Lansing, before taking two weeks off for winter break.