MIDDLETOWN – The Tri-Village Patriots just kept getting stronger as Monday’s game went on as they began their second three-game week with a solid, no-nonsense 79-23 victory over the Southwestern Buckeye League’s Middletown Madison Mohawks.
This week the Patriots play against teams that in three different leagues: the SWBL, the Cross County Conference and the Midwest Athletic Conference. So they need to keep the same momentum they displayed in this game and get progressively stronger each game.
At the end of the first quarter on Monday the Patriots built a healthy 13-7 lead, mainly scoring on drives to the basket and working the ball inside. They extended their lead to 37-16 by the break.
Madison tried pressing, man to man and some zone against Tri-Village, but no defense could constrain the Patriots.
A lot of teams would be content with a lead like that, but Tri-Village exploded out of the locker room at halftime. Lead by Emma Printz, who would score 16 of her 21 points in the quarter, the team went on an impressive 13-0 run to begin the quarter. Printz would make the final score of the quarter with a last second shot from about 30 feet away from the basket to punctuate a 24-3 quarter that ended any hope of a Mohawk comeback.
“We made a challenge to the kids at halftime,” Tri-Village girls basketball coach Brad Gray said. “The most important points of a game are first three minutes of the first quarter and the first three minutes after halftime. So we challenge the kids to extend the lead to make sure we keep momentum. We wanted to make it a 28-point lead – and we did that and more.”
Even when the second string entered the court in the last quarter the defensive intensity and aggressive rebounding continued. The Patriots only allowed 7 second half points as they completely dominated the game.
“We only gave up 7 points in the second half, which was fabulous,” Gray said. “Our defense really got us going offensively. It allowed us to break out in transition and score some buckets. As we do that we get more and more confident and we feed off of that.
“This is Emma’s best night. She is a junior, but she has been playing varsity all along. This was definitely her best game of offense this season. We knew that she could score like this, and tonight she proved that she could do it. Maddie Downing, our post player, just keeps getting better and better. She keeps growing as a player and since she is a just a sophomore maybe she will continue to grow a little more height, too.”
Next up are Ansonia from the CCC and St. Henry from the MAC.
“Ansonia has four starters back from last year’s team so they have a lot of experience coming back. And they are a guard oriented team, so we are expecting to see a zone defense from them. St. Henry will be a man-to-man defense team and a shell offense sort of like what we saw here tonight. We have a lot of preparation, but we are taking it one game at a time.”
Scoring: Emma Printz 21, Maddie Downing 17, Lauren Flory 13, Lissa Siler 11, Autumn Moore 6, Trisa Porter 6, Madison Foreman 3, Peyton Bietry 2.