Moun­ties soar past Raiders

MSC makes 11 3-point­ers in come­back vic­tory

Pawtucket Times - - FRONT PAGE - By JON BAKER [email protected]­tuck­et­times.com

MSC sinks 11 three-point­ers in win over Shea

WOONSOCKET — When Mount St. Charles head coach Christina Batas­tini walked from the court, well ahead of her girls, af­ter Di­vi­sion II foe Shea High had rolled to an 11-point half­time cushion on Thursday night, she ad­mit­ted she wasn’t at all pleased.

Quite frankly, the Moun­ties weren’t play­ing up to snuff, and that ir­ri­tated her.

It’s more than a safe bet that her squad un­der­stood their men­tor’s dis­plea­sure with their style and effort of play, and chose to do some­thing about it.

MSC man­aged to mount a sec­ond-half come­back, four times ty­ing the con­test, the last time at 43-all af­ter se­nior stand­out Katie Lynch’s lone trey of the evening with 6:19 re­main­ing in reg­u­la­tion.

Af­ter that, the Moun­ties – who had caused the Raiders few mis­takes in the first half – forced their foes to be­come mighty er­ror-prone, man­u­fac­tured a big run in the mid­sec­tion of the sec­ond half and rolled to a 65-63 up­set vic­tory over Shea.

When asked how MSC pulled off the wild, en­ter­tain­ing tri­umph, she stated, “Well, I think my half­time dis­cus­sion with the girls was rather ef­fec­tive,” she noted, tongue-in-cheek. “I haven’t been that an­i­mated in a long time. I’d say I was very dis­tinct call­ing out ex­actly what needed to be done and by whom.

“I’ll also say this: I walked out of the locker room and just left them be­hind. I wanted the play­ers to think about what I had said. I was hop­ing it would elicit a pos­i­tive re­sponse.”

Did it ever. Ri­ley Sprague, who notched only two points in the open­ing 16 min­utes, fin­ished with a team-high 19 points, while Jes­sica San­toro chipped in a dozen and se­nior cap­tain Katie Lynch and Talia Fer­nan­des 11 each.

Lena Nguyen added six points and Ju­lia Vanelli four points and eight re­bounds for the Mount (5-3 over­all).

Ju­nior Yas­mine San­tos col­lected a dou­ble-dou­ble with 19 points and 12 re­bounds for Shea (6-2 over­all, 3-2 league), while sopho­more Jariah Hol­land mus­tered 17, class­mate Al­li­son Dos San­tos Soares an­other dou­ble-dou­ble with 15 points and 14 boards and se­nior De­ne­sha Lomba 12 points.

Shea coach John Lick­ert had made it a point to men­tion his crew had to go with­out se­nior Ash­ley Tor­res and sopho­more point guard Kaylisse Depina, the lat­ter due to an an­kle in­jury suf­fered in a 5148 loss to Mid­dle­town ear­lier this week.

“Those kids are two great play­ers; that’s at least 10 points apiece we were miss­ing, not to men­tion their de­fense,” he stated. “We held them to 19 in the first half be­cause the girls were work­ing at it, but we played no de­fense in the sec­ond half. We started watch­ing them shoot, not get­ting hands in faces, and we paid for it.”

Trail­ing by 11 at in­ter­mis­sion, Lynch drained a pair of free thorws 42 ticks into the stanza, Fer­nan­des a 17-footer off a steal, Meghan Valen­tine a base­line jumper off an­other theft and Fer­nan­des a three to ig­nite a 9-0 run and slice the deficit to 30-28 in the first 2:04.

Not sur­pris­ingly, Shea an­swered, push­ing it to a 35-29 cushion over the next 2:29, but the Mount wouldn’t yield. Af­ter Lynch’s bomb to knot it at 43-43 with 6:19 re­main­ing, San­tos again re­gained the lead at 45-43 with two free throws, yet with 5:34 on the score­board clock, Fer­nan­des nailed a trey and was fouled, then con­verted the four-point play to give MSC the 47-45 ad­van­tage.

Nguyen added a put­back on a turnover (one of 18 in the fi­nal ses­sion) and Sprague a tri­fecta to make it 52-45.

An­other Sprague trey pushed the lead to 60-49 with 3:43 re­main­ing, though the Raiders erupted for an 11-4 flurry fol­low­ing Hol­land’s three with 37.6 ticks left.

Soares’ put­back with 6.1 on the clock knifed it to 6563, but the Moun­ties held their ground.

“The key was chang­ing our de­fense,” Batas­tini said. “In the first half, we at­tempted to pres­sure them, then drop back into a 3-2 zone, and at times some reg­u­lar 2-3 zone to help us re­bound. In the sec­ond, we ex­tended that 2-3 to put more pres­sure on the ball­han­dler, and I think it dis­rupted them.

“We had to elim­i­nate their sec­ond shots, as that’s how they were scor­ing in the first half. How best to do that? Force them not to take a first shot by turn­ing them over.

SHEA (63) – Yas­mine San­tos 7 5-11 19, De­ne­sha Lomba 4 4-5 12, Al­li­son Dos San­tos Soares 6 3-5 15, Jaida Robin­son 0 0-0 0, Alia Dar­ius 0 0-0 0, Sarah Kone 0 0-0 0, An­tonette Cooper 0 0-0 0, Jariah Hol­land 6 3-7 17; to­tals 23 15-28 63.

MOUNT ST. CHARLES (65) – Katie Lynch 2 6-11 11, Ri­ley Sprague 7 1-1 19, Talia Fer­nan­des 4 1-1 11, Jess San­toro 4 0-0 12, Meghan Valen­tine 1 0-0 2, Lena Nguyen 3 0-0 6, Ju­lia Vanelli 2 0-0 4, Meghan Lam­bert 0 0-0 0, Ni­cole Le­mos 0 0-0 0, Cal­lie Thibault 0 0-0 0; to­tals 23 8-13 65.

Photo by Ernest A. Brown

Shea ju­nior wing Jariah Hol­land (33) glides past a Mount de­fender in the first half of Thursday night’s Di­vi­sion II con­test. Shea led by 11 points at half­time, but the Moun­ties bat­tles back to earn a 65-63 home vic­tory over the Raiders.

Photo by Ernest A. Brown

Mount se­nior Katie Lynch (50) scored 11 points Thursday night.

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