Poor shooting and bad defensive decisions force girls' basketball to lose second straight
DEC. 12, NELSON H. KOBREN MEMORIAL GYMNASIUM—
With the clock winding down in the girls' basketball team's game against the Walter Johnson (WJ) Wildcats, the Blazers were forced to foul in order to stop the clock. This is a common technique, but Blair failed to grasp one key aspect of the strategy: Foul the other team's worst free-throw shooter. Blair, instead, fouled Wildcat star Alex Porter four times late in the game. She hit all her shots to keep the lead for the Wildcats. So despite a valiant effort from the Blazers, WJ proved to be too strong, and Blair lost, 47-38.
Blair's record drops to 1-2 for the season. A 68-19 manhandling of Einstein in the season-opener on Dec. 8 is the team's only victory thus far. The other loss was a hard-fought 50-45 loss to B-CC on Dec. 9.
An impressive performance from senior guard Brittany Higgins paced Blair against the Wildcats. She scored 17 points and recorded six steals while providing a leadership presence when senior center Emily Ramsay was sidelined with early foul trouble. Ramsay finished second in scoring for the Blazers with 6 points. Ramsay is averaging a double-double through the Blazers' first three games, with 11.7 points and 10.0 rebounds. Junior Vicky Dean scored five, and the rest of the Blazers' scores were spread out.
Coach William Lindsey was pleased with Higgins' performance. "Brittany was good today," he said. "She stayed out of foul difficulty, which really gave her an opportunity to show her talents."
The Wildcats out-shot the Blazers the whole game through. The Blazers were very inefficient on the offensive side of the ball, as they shot a meager 24.5 percent from the floor. The team's 38 points are its fewest in the last two seasons. Lindsey noted after the game that WJ was the second team in a row that could hit its free throws—a marked advantage over the Blazers, who were 11-for-25 from the line against the Wildcats' 21-for-33.
Lindsey attributed the loss to mistakes (especially repeatedly fouling Porter towards the end of the game) and the absence of sophomore center Cate Rassman, the team's leading scorer, who was out of town.
Porter proved to be the difference in the game, scoring 13 of her 23 points in the second quarter to blow the game wide open and drive the halftime score to 24-14. She also hit her foul shots down the stretch, keeping the Blazers' furious rallies at arm's length.
Frustration for Blair's inability to play up to its potential marked the veteran coach's face after the game. "What we do is go in spurts. It's like we can't get people to click on all cylinders," he said.
Blair next plays at home against perennial powerhouse Damascus on Dec. 19 at 5:15 p.m.
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