McLouth plays tenacious defense
"Psycho defense" became an integral part of the McLouth Middle School girls basketball teams this year.
"It was basically a scramble run and jump press and it was mostly our guards harassing their guards," coach Steve Gish said. "Most of the time, once they caught the ball we got in their grill and pressured them, sometimes trapping, sometimes one-on-one defense."
The defense became known as psycho defense. In fact, the team adopted a new mascot, the piranha, to symbolize its defense. Small purple and yellow piranha signs were sold before the A-team's season finale against Wathena. Students who purchased the $1 signs were admitted to the game for free. McLouth won the game, 30-21.
The aggressive defensive strategy helped the middle school teams.
The A-team finished 9-6, while the B-team went 10-3 on the season. The C-team, meanwhile, finished 5-1 for a combined 24-10 record.
Of the 19 players on this year's roster, Gish said 13 are seventh-graders.
McLouth's B-team won tournaments at Jefferson County North and at home. The A-team, playing in the league tournament at the end of the season, fell in the first round but bounced back for two wins in the consolation rounds of the tournament.
Gish said he was encouraged by how the A-team progressed as the season moved ahead. The Bulldogs opened the season at 1-4, but won eight of their last 10 games for the 9-6 final record.
"Yes, it was very enjoyable for me and the girls," Gish said about the season for all three teams.
Oskaloosa, L, 42-12 (0-1)
Everest, W, 27-26 (1-1)
Jackson Heights, L, 47-22 (1-2)
Jefferson Co. North, L, 42-16 (1-3)
Valley Falls, L, 40-19 (1-4)
Pleasant Ridge, W, 39-18 (2-4)
Troy, W, 29-9 (3-4)
Pleasant Ridge, W, 41-25 (4-4)
Valley Falls, L, 34-21 (4-5)
Atchison County, W, 27-26 (5-5)
Doniphan West, W, 26-21 (6-5)
Wathena, W, 23-13 (7-5)
Valley Falls, L, 29-17 (7-6)
Doniphan West, W, 25-18 (8-6)
Wathena, W, 30-21 (9-6)
Jefferson Co. North, W, 14-10 (1-0)
Valley Falls, W, 14-10 (2-0)
Oskaloosa, L, 25-17 (2-1)
Everest, W, 18-11 (3-1)
Jackson Heights, W, 23-21 (4-1)
Jeff. Co. North, W, 12-6 (5-1)
Valley Falls, W, 22-14 (6-1)
Doniphan West, W, 23-8 (7-1)
Troy, W, 17-8, (8-1)
Pleasant Ridge, W, 31-21 (9-1)
Valley Falls, W, 19-10 (10-1)
Atchison County L, 32-20 (10-2)
Doniphan West, L, 25-22, OT (10-3)
Oskaloosa, W, 12-8 (1-0)
Everest, W, 18-16 (2-0)
Jackson Heights, W, 10-6 (3-0)
Jeff Co. North, L, 14-11 (3-1)
Pleasant Ridge, W, 16-8 (4-1)
Atchison Co., W, 20-16, OT (5-1)
Ashley Coffman, Corinne Hoffhines, Kaley Patterson, Katy Perry, Logan Terry, Jessie Tropue, Kelsey Campbell, Morgan Drinnon, Audrey Lamborn, Caroline Overbaugh, Terri Stewart, Kate Turner, Emily Welsh, Kami Wisdom, Morgan Wise, Anndrea Sullivan, Hanna Walbridge, Cheyenne Patton, Brittany Schuman, Kali Sharon and Catelyn Winborn.