The North Decatur girls basketball team defeated South Ripley, a potential sectional opponent, 51-35 at home Tuesday night. North improves to 2-3 on the season.
The Lady Chargers led 24-22 at the half after cruising to a 15-6 lead after the first quarter.
“We definitely showed signs tonight of the team that we are capable of being every night that we take the floor. It is a process,” said North head coach Brad Bryant. “We have worked very hard since the South Decatur game of trying to clean up our act a little. We showed improvement against Knightstown, but only for a half. It was really fun to see the girls come out tonight and put it together for an entire game…a full 32 minutes of solid basketball and to come out on top 51-35.”
Bryant said he was pleased with the play of the defense against a dangerous Raiders team.
“The one thing I really like about our team at this point is our defense,” he said. “We have done a really nice job. For the third quarter we held SR to only two points, and for the game 35 points. I will take that any night.”
Senior Jenna Meyer, who has had a double-double in four of North’s five games, tallied 24 points and 10 rebounds.
Jenna Meyer had another very good game,” said Bryant. “She did a great job of getting a lot of great looks at the basket.”
Junior Andrea Volk followed with 10 points. Senior Veronica Yager, junior Anna Wallpe and freshman Mary Hughes each scored four points. Junior Abby Lamb added three, and junior Myra Steele chipped in two.
Bryant said the two biggest positives of the night were the clean play and fewer turnovers, and North’s shooting. The Chargers committed just 13 turnovers on the night, and shot 55 percent from the field – including 8-for-8 in the fourth quarter.
“South Ripley comes at you the entire game. They want to trap and make it difficult for you,” he said. “We have had back to back games now seeing teams that do this. So, we were ready for it. Our girls did an excellent job of handling it. Emma (Geis), Myra, Andrea, Veronica and Mary…all of our guards did a really good job tonight. From a shooting standpoint, we have talked a lot about getting better looks. We have some good shooters, but I just don’t think we have found our rhythm yet. Until then, we need to find the high percentage shots. Our shooting was much better tonight because our passing was much better. We did a nice job of making the extra pass and finding the open person.”
Bryant also credited the play of Volk, Lamb and Anna Wallpe.
“Andrea Volk is starting to play with more confidence,” he said. “Offensively it is coming for her. We need her to be a threat. When we get her clicking, along with Abby Lamb from the perimeter, to go along with our post presence, we can be very good. We also like a lot of what Andrea does defensively. She kind of flies around out there taking chances. She does a good job of making things happen for us defensively. Anna Wallpe delivered another solid performance. She scored four points, but she was very good on the boards again with 10 rebounds, five offensive. She did a nice job defensively.”
Bryant also applauded the solid play of Geis and Hughes at guard spots.
“From Knightstown to South Ripley, I thought Em really did a good job,” he said. “She looked like a point guard out there tonight. We don’t expect her to score. We expect her to take care of the ball and defend. She is an excellent defender. I also thought Mary Hughes came in and did a really good job for us. Mary is a very good all round player. She just needs time to get comfortable out there. When she came in in the first quarter, she had two excellent drives to the basket. She plays with a lot of confidence and intelligence for a freshman.”
North plays at Oldenburg, which is 5-1, on Thursday night.
“Hopefully, this win and how we went about doing our business, will carry over to this game,” said Bryant. “Oldenburg has a very good team.”
Contact Nick Gonnella at (812) 663-3111, x7003.