Lady Blackhawks snap skid with win over RSM
HINTON — The Hinton girls basketball team was in the midst of a season-worst string of three consecutive losses, two of which were against ranked teams, but the Lady Blackhawks avoided adding another to the streak by coming away with a 55-25 win over Remsen St. Mary’s on Tuesday.
“Our defensive effort was very, very good,” Hinton Head Coach Matt Leary said. “Five points, six points, three points for quarters and 11 in the fourth. We did a good job of forcing turnovers and rebounding. The first half we didn’t shoot it real well. The second half I thought we shot it better and that’s how we were able to extend our lead.”
The Blackhawks had a quiet final four minutes of the first quarter with their only bucket being a 3-pointer from Natalee Junck, but the Hawks weren’t able to capitalize either as they got a 3-pointer of their own midway through the frame from Emma Galles to make it 7-5 in favor of the Blackhawks, but were unable to score the rest of the frame.
The drought continued through the first four minutes of the second quarter for RSM with the total length for the team going without any points taking up the equivalent of an entire quarter.
Hinton was able to heat up a little more in the second quarter as they went on a 10-0 run to begin the frame.
RSM finally found the bottom of the net at the 3:57 mark as Sydney Schroeder got one of her two baskets in the game to snap the drought.
After taking a 23-11 lead into the locker room, Hinton used another run to create an even bigger gap as they scored the first 11 points of the second half. This run included a pair of 3-pointers for Bella Badar who finished with a game-high 19 points, a few points above her season average.
Getting more separation after halftime was important for Hinton to get according to Leary.
“Everybody agreed that we left some points on the board,” Leary said. “We had a lot of shots in the paint, but there were a few strings there where we were able to extend the lead. I thought especially the third quarter and getting off to a great start. The lead was only 12 at the half, definitely 12 can go either way, and you always want to score the first couple buckets of the second half and a couple minutes in it was up to 20. Only holding them to three in that third quarter was crucial.”
Just like in the second quarter, it took RSM until the 3:57 mark to get a basket to drop as Brittany Johnson got the lay-in. Johnson ended as the leading scorer for the Hawks with nine points.
Hinton led by 29 entering the fourth quarter after outscoring their foe 20-3 in the third quarter. The Blackhawks got two points right before the buzzer as Anna Coffee pulled up for a mid-range jumper in the lane as part of her eight points in the contest.
Ashlyn Reintzel hit Hinton’s only 3-pointer of the fourth quarter as the team worked towards the running clock. Reintzel scored eight of her 11 points in the second half. She was just one point shy of her season high which she had in the team’s first meeting against RSM.
“She’s definitely capable of taking the ball,” Leary said of Reintzel. “She can step outside and shoot the three-ball too. I think some of it is just trusting her skills, but I think she’s one of those players that can score at all levels, down low in the paint and around the perimeter.”
After sitting at a 34-point differential for a few minutes, the Blackhawks were finally able to initiate the running clock with 3:49 remaining. The point needed came at the free-throw line as Emma Galles picked up her fifth foul against Badar who missed the first but made the second to initiate the running clock.
RSM rallied for their best scoring stretch of the night once the clock starting running continuously as they got seven points in the final 3:49 to narrowly avoid undercutting their lowest scoring game of the season which was a 62-24 loss at Akron-Westfield. While fatigue from playing four games in five days with a limited roster likely played into it, RSM Head Coach Scott Willman didn’t want to use that as an excuse.
“It was one of our rougher nights,” Willman said. “We’ve been playing better so we’ve got to go back and refocus and play hard here to finish out the year.”
The Hawks will get a nice long chance to rest up as their next game isn’t until next Tuesday when the team will travel to play a currently ranked Woodbury Central team in a girls-only contest that was postponed from the beginning of the season. RSM will take a 4-16 record into that game.
Hinton improves to 10-7 on the season and will host a West Sioux team with a similar 10-8 record on Thursday. The two teams have not met yet this season. The Falcons will enter the game on a bit of a rough stretch with losses in five of their previous six games, however, the largest margin of defeat in those losses is just five points.
Leary hopes his team can get some momentum heading into the postseason with the team’s final three games against the Falcons, South O’Brien and Gehlen Catholic.
“We’ve just got to make sure we keep working on keeping the defensive effort that we had tonight and just continue to get more efficient on the offensive end,” Leary said.
Hinton: Points- Badar 19, Reintzel 11, Coffee 8, Junck 5, Lake 5, Webb 5, Weiland 2.
RSM: Points- Johnson 9, E. Galles 5, S. Schroeder 4, G. Schroeder 3, T. Galles 3, Delperdang 1.