Lancers spear Ranger hoopsters
By Jesse Phelps
A promising season reached a premature
conclusion Saturday night for Nordhoff's talented girls' varsity
basketball squad when it was beaten at home by Bishop Amat, 78-50,
in the second round of the CIF Division IIIA playoffs.
The Rangers were outrebounded by the hustling Lancers, 61-29.
Down by 10 at the half, the Rangers opened the third quarter
even colder. The team went without a field goal or defensive
rebound for the first four minutes of the third quarter, despite
two quick time-outs called for by head coach Ted Cotti.
"That was the game," Cotti said. Nordhoff spent the
rest of the third and the entire fourth quarter playing catch-up.
The first-half deficit was due, in large part, to Nordhoff's
inability to convert from the free throw line. After missing
seven free throws in the half, the Rangers had a chance to cut
the lead to seven at the break but missed a wide-open, three-point
Cotti said he and his staff also failed to scout the opposition
"Girls who supposedly couldn't shoot buried three threes
in first half," he pointed out.
Freshman point guard Ariane Roache led the team in defeat, finishing
with seven assists and 13 points. All-County forward Alison Bennett
had 14 points and 12 boards.
Things looked so promising for the team after its first-round
game Thursday, when Roache, Tahnie Benitez and Johanna Rothermel
all scored in double figures in a first-round thrashing of the
El Segundo Eagles.
Nordhoff won 60-31 behind strong team defense and a balanced
Roache shot five of seven from the field, including a three-pointer,
and added five assists. Benitez poured in 10 points and added
seven rebounds in limited minutes. Rothermel came off the bench
to score 10 points.
Perhaps the performance of the night belonged to senior forward
Becky Kennedy, who cleaned the glass all night, notching 12 rebounds
to go along with seven points.
Kenndy said the experience of playing tough competition early
in the year helped prepare Nordhoff for the playoffs. "Playing
bigger schools in preseason helped us a lot," she said.
"All those big games and tournaments that we went to, really
made it possible for us just to come and kick butt."
Nordhoff gave up the opening points of the night, but led 17-7
at the end of the first quarter on a three-pointer by Alexis
Kenyon on a nice feed from Roache. By the half, the lead was
35-16 and it was 53-25 after three, as Nordhoff continued to
score twice for every basket it conceded.
The second half saw Cotti empty his bench completely. Sasha O'Brien
came up big off the pine, grabbing four fourth-quarter rebounds.
When the game was over, Nordhoff looked ready to make a run deep
into the tournament but the coaches and players from Bishop Amat
had other ideas.
The Ojai Valley News
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