Wildcats go all out

February 03, 2004|by BOB PARASILITI

WILLIAMSPORT - All in all, it was better when the Williamsport girls basketball team had it all.

As in, when the Wildcats had all their defense in place.

Williamsport turned to a full-court zone defense in the second half - more for placement than pressure - and pushed out to a working margin Monday, resulting in a 46-41 MVAL Antietam victory over Boonsboro.

"At first, we weren't getting back on defense quick enough," Williamsport coach Curtis Graff said. "We were getting in position almost, not all the way in position to stop their shooters and they hit their shots."

Boonsboro (6-9, 2-5) used quickness and motion to work Williamsport out of position and create havoc and openings for shots. When the Warriors had the Wildcats on the move, they controlled the game, leading 15-11 after the first quarter and trailing 24-23 at the half.


Williamsport started the second half in a 1-2-1-1 press, more to get position defensively than to get steals. The Wildcats (5-9, 4-3) scored the first seven points of the half and outscored the Warriors 14-5 in the third quarter to assume a comfortable 38-28 lead.

"We pressed to move out players up the floor," Graff said. "It allowed us to have a couple of players back on defense to slow down their offense."

When Williamsport was able to slow Boonsboro, the Wildcats could rebound and work the ball to the inside. Lindsey Plotner was able to work in the paint for a game-high 21 points.

Williamsport moved out of the pressure in the fourth quarter and Boonsboro tried to mount a comeback, rattling off a 7-0 run in the first two minutes to move back within 38-35. The Warriors stayed in striking distance at 43-39 until Plotner anticipated a skip pass and picked it off at the top of the key with 1:19 remaining, resulting in a layup.

It was just enough for the Wildcats to seal the victory.

"We made a switch on defense with Lindsey," Graff said. "We weren't going for the steal, but we wanted her for weak-side rebounding for when Boonsboro shot a 3. She is big and mobile and she went for it when she saw it coming."

Sarah Keyser had 14 and Jessie Ambrose had 10 for Boonsboro, including two 3s each.

"We made some mistakes today, but I'm really pleased with the progress we have been making," Graff said. "In the beginning, we weren't doing well but the girls didn't give up. We are beginning to understand ourselves."

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