Fuegel, defense lead St. Basil past School of the Future
When Hajaaha Stevens won the opening tap, then proceeded to post up and get a high-percentage shot on the JDmH’s firsW SRssHssLRn )rLGDy night, it appeared as though the School of the Future had something to work with even though the ball rolled around the rim and off.
BuW WKDW firsW ORRN wDs mighty deceiving because it was more than four minutes and nine turnovers later before the Firebirds put up another shot. And then it was another 3½ minutes and another six turnovers before a third shot was taken.
By then, St. Basil had a 16-2 lead and was well on its way to a 69-29 victory in WKH firsW rRunG Rf WKH 3,AA Class AA playoffs at Colonial Middle School.
St. Basil coach Terry Mancini was more than diplomatic about the win.
“,W’s D sWDWH SODyRff JDmH, ,’m rHDOOy KDSSy wLWK KRw my girls came out,” he said. “We’re really playing loose and it shows in that we are shooting really well. And defensively, our guards are really good. Kalee Fuegel and Molly Greenberg, we feed off of their energy.”
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Rf minutes, there was never a doubt about that. Even though WKH 3DnWKHrs wHrH D OLWWOH sORw out of the gate on offense, the GHfHnsH wDs sWLflLnJ.
“The last three games we’ve played in 2A, that’s how we’ve been playing,” Mancini said. “Our defense GLFWDWHs Rur RffHnsH. ,W NLnG of gets us going, gets girls involved. We work on that stuff. We are very big on our defense.”
And then Fuegel took care of the offense. The junior scored 10 straight points, including knocking down a couple of three-pointers, to JHW WKH 3DnWKHrs Rn WKH rRDG to round two.
Mancini was hardly surprised.
“6KH’s wDs firsW WHDm AOOLeague, so she’s capable of that at any time,” he said. “6KH’s D YHry unsHOfisK SODyer. We wish she would be mRrH sHOfisK, EuW WKH sNy Ls the limit for her.”
“My teammates got me good passes,” Fuegel said, “DnG WKHn , WrLHG WR ORRN fRr FuWWHrs. , WKRuJKW wH wRrNHG hard. We didn’t know what to expect because we had never played them before.”
Once the lead got to 20 midway through the second quarter, Mancini started emptying the bench. But it didn’t seem to matter who wDs Rn WKH flRRr fRr WKH 3Dn- thers. St. Basil led 36-9 at intermission then increased the advantage to 52-19 after three quarters.
TKH 3DnWKHrs SODyHG 15 players and 14 of them scored at least one basket. Fuegel led the way with 16 points, while Sarah Wilson scored nine and Karen Lapkiewicz chipped in with eight.
Stevens led the Firebirds with 15 points and 10 rebounds.
The win was easy, but was well worth the effort.
“You get your feet wet,” 0DnFLnL sDLG. “,’m surH WKH next game (against District 3’s Delone Catholic on Tuesday) will be tougher, but we got the experience of playing in a state playoff game.
“We know it’s going to get tougher as we move forward, but we have to play who is on the schedule and that team was on our schedule.
“And we want vance.”
St. Basil’s Karen Lapkiewicz drives to the basket past School of the Future’s Hajaaha Stevens.