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Eagles take messy approach to win

December 08, 2007|By JOHN O'BRIEN

HEDGESVILLE, W.Va. - For running nothing that looked like an organized offense, the Hedgesville girls basketball team had to feel pretty good with Friday night's result.

The Eagles came out on top in a turnover-filled 48-27 win over Mercersburg Academy during which coach Ben Merica said his team never really took to a new offensive strategy he and his staff have been trying to install.

"I feel like we didn't run our offense at all," said Merica, still happy that his team improved to 2-0. "We're trying to work on some changes on offense, trying to simplify.

"Offensively, we were a little atrocious at times."

The Eagles shot 20 of 52 from the field while committing 22 turnovers. The score was just 8-2 after the first quarter, when the teams combined for 18 turnovers.

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Merica said he is looking forward to a film session where he can show his team the different speeds it plays at practice and the one it played at Friday.

"We don't practice (that fast)," Merica said.

Erin Breen led the Eagles with eight points, and Brittany Kolb and Brittany Boarman each added seven. Boarman also collected seven rebounds.

And she had plenty of chances to rebound. The Blue Storm (2-1) saw its early-season success on offense vanish.

Mercersburg made just 9 of 44 shots and turned the ball over 26 times. It had posted wins by scores of 55-29 and 62-26 before Friday.

"We're probably a step quicker than we have been the last couple years defensively," Merica said. "And that's a good thing."

After the low-scoring first quarter, the Eagles put 17 points up in the second, making 8 of 22 shots. Tessa Deneen kickstarted the outburst, gathering a steal and converting it into a layup then scoring in transition for a 13-2 lead with 6:35 remaining in the half.

Ciera Nicholson put back her own miss before Mercersburg reeled off four in a row to make it 15-6, but Boarman answered with consecutive buckets to make it 18-6 with 3:40 remaining.

Katy Leborious scored four in a row, Jessica Shirley scored on a putback and Greyson Brooks added a bucket for a 26-8 lead at halftime.

Lauren Dobish led the Blue Storm with 11 points, and Jen Dillon added six.

"I feel good that were able to do something here for ourselves to get a win against a previously undefeated team," Merica said. "But we didn't run anything that looked like a press break."

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