Big second half propels girls basketball past section rival Annandale

Last Thursday, the girls basketball team played a tough section rivalry matchup against the Annandale Cardinals. After an inconsistent first half, the girls were able to find rhythm and come out with a win by a score of 51-29.

The first half proved to be a slow and tedious battle between the two teams. Offensively, both teams struggled to knock down shots and find openings. Annandale’s careless 9 fouls led the girls to potential free throw opportunities, which they weren’t able to capitalize on.

Coach Thompson acknowledged that the team, “passed the ball well but weren’t finishing very well.” Both teams remained solid defensively, not letting turnovers or loose balls be utilized by their opponents.

A huge help to the Fire’s competitiveness in the first half goes to junior Julia Geurs with 6 points in the paint. The Fire maintained a small momentum, leading the team into a 16-12 advantage over the Cardinals at the half.

The second half could be characterized as a “wake-up call” for the Fire. Senior captain Shea Thompson said, “Our goals for the second half were to eliminate their big players, get them into foul trouble – where we would have to start knocking down shots, and then taking advantage of arch-to-paint opportunities.”

The girls were able to start finding openings and using their newfound tempo to push them to a significant advantage over the Cardinals. Although both teams found themselves in foul trouble in the second half, the girls were able to excel offensively at a faster rate than their opponent.

In an attempt to close the lead, juniors Grace Conroy and Leigh Steiner showcased their abilities in the second half with a combined 22 points (Conroy – 7pts, Steiner – 15pts). Shea Thompson topped it off with two 3-pointers to put them up by 20 late into the second half. The girls finished on top with a huge 51-29 win over a tough section rival.

As a team, what are your goals moving forward with a big section rivalry win?

Junior Grace Conroy: “I would say just to continue playing like team – keep being dynamic. This was the first game where I feel as a team we were comfortable with our performance. I think we just gotta keep playing with that mindset.”

Coach Thompson: “We need to improve on consistency. Like you saw in the first half, we really struggled to score and work as a team but in the second half we fixed that. We need to become that team that played in the second halfWe need to come out with more energy and motivate and push each other to the best of our abilities.”

The girls resume play on Wednesday the 27th at Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted High School against Stewartville School District at 2:30pm.