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Jan. 12, 2017

Blair girls basketball topples Springbrook

by Amy Forsbacka, Staff Writer
The Blair Blazers won 60-24 on Friday against the Springbrook Blue Devils. The first quarter saw the Blazers start off slowly, allowing the Blue Devils to match them score for score. Despite the shooting ability of the Springbrook guards, Blair was able to take the lead in the second quarter. But it wasn't until the third quarter that Blair really turned on the heat and pulled ahead with a commanding lead thanks to their rebounding and scoring in the post.

In the first quarter, Blair didn't play as well as they could, especially on defense. The Springbrook guards were able to score, but Blair managed to keep up offensively. "Usually in our first quarter we're all jittery, it's because of our nerves but when we get that out of the way we just play like ourselves," said junior Sara Temple. According to junior Nora Olagbaju, the Blazers came in with a plan. "We wanted to know the players and get a scout. Pretty much before every game we're supposed to know the players who we're gonna be matched up against," she said. Blair ended the first quarter down 12-10.

Senior Lauren Frost passed to Sara Temple who made a basket early in the second quarter, and that's when Blair really started to score. In the second quarter, the Blazers began to pick it up to get a lead, scoring 19 more points in the quarter. The Blazers built up a lead going into halftime, with a score of 29-19 by the end of the second quarter. Junior L'Shana Cobey credited their coach for the team's motivation in their turn around during the second half. "Our coach has good motivational speeches. It gets to us, we take it personally and we make sure we do it well and we execute everything she says well," she explained.

The Springbrook guards applied a lot of pressure on defense during the third quarter. Senior point guard Allison Mackenzie was able to facilitate the offense, hustling to get a jump ball despite this. According to Cobey, a strength they had during the game was their defensive play. "Springbrook had two shooters, but I think we did well covering them on defense," she said. The Blazers stepped up both their offense and defense to blow Springbrook out of the water by scoring 12 more points, and allowing just one, bringing the score to 41-20 at the end of the third quarter. After halftime Springbrook was held to just five points.

At the end of the fourth quarter, even though the game was out of reach, Helena Mulugeta was still looking to score. She hit two three pointers in a row which excited her teammates and the crowd as the game came to a close.

Olagbaju said that the team played well because they executed their new strategy properly. "This week we came up with four new plays. Even though it's kind of hard to memorize them, we came out with a whole different base to run," Olagbaju said.

One area Temple thinks could use some work is the team's confidence. "That's the number one thing," she said. Cobey knows that as the season progresses, the team has to be persistent if they want to keep winning. "We have to stick together and make sure we don't fall apart when things get tough."

Lauren Frost is the entertainment editor for Silver Chips Online



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