Poe, Bergstrom lift ’Cats to bounce-back victory
Basehor-Linwood girls use strong start to avenge earlier loss to Sumner Academy
Courtney Poe sparked the Basehor-Linwood girls basketball team with 13 points in a 42-35 victory Tuesday at Sumner Academy.
The win helped BLHS usher in the 2010 portion of the season on a positive note.
Coach Noah Simpson had preached the importance of putting a difficult December behind the team, and the players responded.
Late in the fourth quarter, Poe made six consecutive foul shots to clinch the victory. Earlier in the quarter, Megan Bergstrom made a couple pivotal baskets for the Bobcats on consecutive possessions.
She chipped in a layup on one possession and then drew a foul on the next. Bergstrom went to the line and made two free throws to help BLHS preserve the lead. She finished with a game-high 19 points.
Poe and Bergstrom’s performances helped BLHS avenge a loss to Sumner Academy earlier in the season.
On defense, BLHS switched from a man-to-man defense to a 2-3 zone most of the game. The Bobcats ran a lot of trapping defenses out of the zone, and they rebounded better while playing that defense than they had earlier in the season.
The Bobcats also played better basketball in the first quarter than in previous games this season. Slow starts have plagued BLHS all season, but Tuesday was different. Rather than scoring just one or two baskets — or being shut out, which happened against Mill Valley — the Bobcats looked at the scoreboard after the first eight minutes and felt good.
“We won the first quarter,” Taylor Johnson said to her teammates after the quarter ended.
The Bobcats started off on a 7-2 run and led 9-5 at the end of the quarter.
“We started to feel good and got our confidence back a little,” Simpson said.
The first quarter had been a point of emphasis throughout the winter break. The Bobcats had struggled in the first quarter and then were unable to overcome the deficit in games.
This time it was Sumner who tried to overcome an early deficit. The Sabres battled back and trailed 14-13 at halftime.
In the third quarter, BLHS outscored Sumner 19-8 and led 33-21 entering the fourth quarter. Sumner tried to rally once more, but Poe provided the Bobcats with a scoring spark at the free throw line. Cassy Bever hit a pair of 3-pointers in the quarter to bolster the Bobcats.
“The kids played a hard-fought game,” Simpson said. “Sumner Academy played hard. They are well coached. They get after it. That is one key this year for us, we play hard too. The kids did a good job of getting after it.”
The next time these two teams meet could be in the Class 4A substate tournament with a state berth at stake. The victory Tuesday should give BLHS confidence entering a possible rematch, Simpson said.
“Definitely, I think gives us confidence,” he said. “The girls look forward to this matchup again. We get along well with their coaching staff. The Basehor-Sumner rivalry is starting to kick up a bit. They play hard, they play well year in and year out. This gives us confidence to go in and get a win. We want to build off that and get the ball rolling here.”
Basehor-Linwood (2-4) plays at 6 p.m. Friday at Turner and then plays host to Bishop Ward on Tuesday.