Whittier Wildcats Girls Basketball '10-'11

Mon, Feb 07, 2011 05:00 PM @ Whittier
Team 1 2 3 4 Final
Methuen 19 15 15 16 65
Whittier 11 15 27 20 73

Whittier gets better of Division 1 Methuen

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Monday, February, 07 By Jeff Hamrick

HAVERHILL — For 16 minutes last night, the Division 2 Whittier girls looked like a team that was sluggish and a bit overmatched.

Considering it was playing its fifth game in as many nights and were facing a Division 1 opponent in Methuen, it was understandable.

But the Wildcats came out rejuvenated and motivated in the second half, quickly erasing an eight-point deficit and running away from the Rangers for a 73-65 victory.

"We came right out and pressed them," Whittier coach Kevin Bradley said about the second half when the Wildcats scored 47 points. "We tried to run them. In the first half we started getting a little heavy in foul trouble, so we came out in the second half and ran them."

Whittier (12-4) opened its tough week by losing to Central Catholic, ranked second in Division 1, and suffered a couple tough Commonwealth Conference losses to Greater Lowell and Shawsheen — a two-point overtime defeat on Sunday — sandwiching a win over Lynn Tech. The Wildcats still aren't quite done, having to face Amesbury tonight. Games on Thursday and Saturday wrap up an eight-games-in-10-days stretch.

"With the competition and playing every night, it's like a west-coast trip," said Bradley, whose club is now 2-1 against Division 1 opponents, having defeated Everett early in the season. "I think if anything it makes the kids believe and helps the team morale. They know they have one more game left and its brought them closer. It's in their minds they can win the big games like this ... When the postseason comes they'll know they can play and matchup against those teams."

Methuen (3-10) used the height of inside players Abby Galloway-Burke (four offensive rebounds and seven total), Amanda Petrow (six and 10) and Ashley LeBlanc to control the boards in the opening half, racking up 16 offensive boards to only three for Whittier.

"That was what we were screaming about at halftime," Bradley said. "That was our halftime adjustment was being able to position ourselves. We told them what they were doing, and that was the big correction. They were pounding on us inside. Those three girls are the biggest and strongest we've faced."

After Whittier tied the score at 34 early in the third quarter, the teams battled the rest of the period with three ties and five lead changes. But with Whittier forcing 17 of Methuen's 30 total turnovers after intermission, the Wildcats were able to open an eight-point lead 70 seconds into the fourth.

"That's been plaguing us all year," Methuen coach Karen McLaughlin said. "We haven't been doing the little things like not coming to the ball, not catching the ball with two hands. It's just basic fundamentals. We play in a tough league, and I only have one senior and two juniors so we're very young."

Danielle Martin scored 16 of her team-high 20 points in the second half and Catherine Roche went 7-of-8 from the line over the final 2 minutes to secure the victory. Christine Medley kept the Wildcats within striking distance by scoring 12 of her 19 points in the opening half.

Methuen, which attempted 89 field-goal attempts — 22 more than Whittier — got 21 points and 19 rebounds from Petrow.

Game Statistics:

Methuen (65): Beka Costa 2 2-5 8, Mollie Condon 3 1-4 7, Courtney Hale 3 1-2 8, Abby Galloway-Burke 4 0-3 8, Amanda Petrow 6 9-12 21, Jessica Rader 1 1-2 3, Courtney Zacharias 1 0-0 2, Kristen Kilowski 0 0-0 0, Ashley LeBlanc 3 2-2 8. Totals 23 16-30 65. 

Whittier (73):  Jennifer Hinds 1 1-7 3, Danielle Martin 9 2-3 20, Catherine Roche 3 9-14 15, Christine Medley 7 2-3 19, Jessica Goulet 4 1-2 9, Kendra Brasil 3 0-2 6, Josie Sanchez 0 0-0 0, Kaisha Rodriguez 0 1-2 1, Christine Barton 0 0-0 0, Kaila Goulet 0 0-2 0. Totals 27 16-35 73.

3-pointers:  M — Costa 2, Hale; W — Medley 3.

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