Blair girls demolish Wheaton on senior night
FEB. 22, NELSON H. KOBREN MEMORIAL GYMNASIUM-
It is no secret that this has been a rough season for the Blair girls basketball team. They began their first few games hopefully, yet then seemed to descend into a drought where opponents appeared unbeatable, no matter how close the Blair girls came to a win. Whether or not the drought is over is now the question, as in this game the Blazers faced a very weak Wheaton squad which put up almost no fight as the Blair girls cruised to an easy 48-19 victory.
This win will certainly feel good to the team as a whole and especially to the seniors, who were honored tonight before the game, yet the girls will have to realize their potential and true ability to gel on the court before they face number 12 seed Quince Orchard in the first round of the playoffs. Despite the crushing defeat, Blair struggled in the first quarter putting enough points up when they knew they should have immediately left the Knights in the dust. Pulling ahead early, something Blair lacked and could have greatly benefited from this season, will be key in the playoffs as well as in future seasons.
The game began with an all-senior starting line-up of Tigisty Berhe, Vicky Dean, Jawana Henderson, Brittany Higgins and Alycia Stover, who all contributed enthusiasm and heart in the first quarter, despite scoring a relatively low nine points during the period. While the Blazers took far more shots than Wheaton, they were unsuccessful on many occasions, shooting without accuracy and their usual fluid motion. The two biggest contributors were Higgins (four points) and Henderson (five points). Wheaton took all of their three points from free-throws, failing to score anything form the field but shooting 38 percent from the foul line.
Wheaton began to show signs of life at the beginning of the second quarter, immediately scoring a three-point-play in the first minute. Blair still seemed unmotivated, however, faced by such lackluster opponents. The Blazers knew at this point that they could easily pick up their game and run away with a win, but didn't, instead taking few risks on offense. In fact, Blair did not score until junior Cate Rassman sank a two-pointer, one of three from her that period, in the fourth minute. Junior Monique Eldridge was also impressive as she scored a two-pointer in the seventh minute, was awarded a free-throw, missed it, yet was then vindicated by grabbing her own rebound and sinking another shot for two more points.
Only after half-time, as Blair held a 19-9 lead, did they really step it up and show what they are capable of. The girls scored 22 points in the quarter, a big improvement from the previous periods' weaker offense. Good defense from Rassman and strong offensive success from Dean, Higgins and Henderson finally gave the girls the spirit they needed and sent a message to the Knights that they were not willing to accept anything less than their best.
Ellie Blalock. Ellie is a SENIOR in the CAP program at Blair. She enjoys such activities as traveling, being able to say "water" in six languages and having heart-to-heart chats with eccentric politicians. If you're in need of a laugh, please ask Ellie about her driving record...you … More »