Wildcats scratch past Chieftains
Friday night's matchup between Tonganoxie and DeSoto could only be described as a defensive battle.
Neither girls basketball team shot the ball well. Both teams typically score near double what they did on Friday.
"We had to play pretty good defensively," said Coach Leslie Foster. "They only scored 29 points."
But Tonganoxie only scored 23 as the Wildcats handed the Chieftains their fourth loss in five games.
Junior Keri Walker put Tonganoxie on the scoreboard first, hitting one of two first-quarter free throws.
But the Chieftains went cold for the rest of the quarter. The team's only other points came on a three-pointer from junior Andrea Korb.
DeSoto led 6-4 after the first quarter.
Tonganoxie's defense continued to play strong, holding DeSoto to seven second-quarter points. But the Chieftains still struggled offensively and only scored six in the second.
Korb scored seven of the team's 10 first-half points.
The second half went about the same for Tonganoxie, and the Chieftains only scored three more points in the second half than they did in the third. But the defense held DeSoto to only 16 second-half points, including just six in the third.
"Defensively, we played pretty well," Foster said. "We just couldn't get our offense to work for us. The shots just weren't falling."
Andrea Korb led the team with nine points. Junior Aimee Eisman had five.
The loss to DeSoto was the second game in a row that the Chieftains have lost by fewer than a half-dozen points.
On Jan. 30, the team lost 31-35 to Basehor-Linwood in a Parents' Night game after holding a narrow lead for most of the game.
As in the DeSoto game, the Chieftains were able to draw first blood, this time on a long two by Andrea Korb in the game's opening minute.
But after that, the teams traded buckets for the remainder of the quarter and the Chieftains led 13-10 after one.
The Bobcats pulled even with the Chieftains, 19-19, at the break, but after leading 27-24 at the end of three quarters, Basehor-Linwood outscored Tonganoxie 11-4 in the fourth to take the game.
The game was close until the end and included nine ties.
Tonganoxie's biggest lead was four points halfway through the third.
Basehor-Linwood only led once until late in the game when it went on an 8-0 run to finish the game and win by four, its biggest advantage.
Despite the two losses, Foster said she was happy with the way her team had played defense in both games.
That defense has been led, at least in the steals and hustle department, by junior Alicia Stauch, who has stolen at least five passes in each of the last two games.
"Alicia has played really well the last two or three games," Foster said. "Defensively, she plays real hard. She gets a lot of steals a lot of rebounds."
The two losses bring the Chieftains' record to 5-10.
The team's next game will be 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Immaculata.
The junior varsity team beat DeSoto 35-22 on Friday behind strong defense and eight points each from sophomore Christie Menhusen and freshman Sarah Holliday.
"Our defense wasn't bad," said Coach Clint Newton, "and they're starting to learn the offense better They've been much more confident. Now were just struggling with keeping the intensity up the entire game."
He said that his team let up in the middle two quarters after jumping out to a 12-6 first-quarter lead.
The Wildcats then outscored Tonganoxie 7-6 in the second to make it 18-13, Tonganoxie at halftime.
They outscored the chieftain 8-7 in the third.
But the team kicked it into overdrive outscore the Wildcats 10-1 in the final period.
The team beat Basehor-Linwood 42-31 on Jan. 30.
The team's two wins bring its record to 5-6. It's next game will be 6 p.m. Tuesday at Immaculata.