Vikings ‘D’ downs Whittell
South Tahoe’s girls weren’t inhospitable enough guests to put up a movable lid covering Whittell’s goal – the Vikings defense just made it seem that way.
Whittell made just four field goals during Tuesday’s borderline basketball battle between the Warriors (0-7) and the Vikings (3-9), losing 44-10. While the Warriors got the shots they wanted, those shots wouldn’t fall, and South Tahoe’s taller team controlled the boards.
“I’m not disappointed with the amount of shots we got,” said Whittell head coach Lindsay Wines. “They just didn’t fall. We were just outsized and outhustled tonight. South Tahoe played a very good game.”
The Vikings prevented Whittell from getting easy second chances. South Tahoe senior forward Tirah Samura had 11 rebounds to go along with a team-high eight points against the much smaller Warriors.
“If they weren’t boxed out, they did well rebounding,” Samura said.
South Tahoe’s dominance on the glass allowed the Vikings to overcome what head coach Tim Jaureguito considered a poor night shooting. Sophomore guard Jen Galea had seven points, and Chantelle Young, Beth Hickman and Amy Carter had six each. Whittell couldn’t get over or around South Tahoe’s front-line players for free balls.
“We didn’t shoot very well tonight,” Jaureguito said. “If you take a look at our shooting percentage, it was terrible. I’m really pleased with our defense. I think, defensively, we played really well and that’s our major emphasis.”
“I don’t know what it was,” she said. “We were lucky that, every once in a while, we made one.”
The defense held Whittell to just two points on one field goal in the first half. The Vikings built a 14-0 lead in the first quarter, and Whittell couldn’t score until junior Caitlin Fagan made a field goal with 1 minute, 42 seconds left in the first half. South Tahoe led 23-2 at halftime. Fagan led Whittell with six points.
“Their aggressive defense just took our girls out of their game,” Wines said.
While Whittell didn’t commit many more turnovers than South Tahoe – they were 9-8 in the second half – South Tahoe forced the Warriors into jump balls when Whittell was on offense. Still, Jaureguito isn’t planning to let his team rest on its laurels after the lopsided win.
“Whittell, being a much smaller school, we should have the advantage when we play them,” Jaureguito said. “I think Lindsay has them going in a good direction for them, and they should do well this year.”
Whittell resumes practice looking to turn opportunities into points.
“(Wednesday’s) practice, all we’re doing is shooting, because like I said, we’re getting our shots,” Wines said. “The girls need to learn the offense is from different positions, too.”
Whittell returns to action with a home game at 4 p.m. Thursday against 4A Douglas. South Tahoe opens its league schedule on Tuesday with a 5:15 p.m. game at Hug.
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