The Washington Times-Herald

Local Sports

December 21, 2012

Cardinals fall twice in Toyota openers

OAKLAND CITY — There was little holiday cheer for Washington Catholic in the opening round of the Toyota Classic against host Wood Memorial Wednesday.

The Cardinals took two losses against the host Trojans. The boys team was defeated by Wood, 56-22, and the girls also fell by a similar 46-22 tally.

The games were similar. The Cardinals started cold from the field, Wood built large leads, and there was little left to accomplish by the midpoint of the third quarters.

The Trojans (1-6) stared quickly in the boys game, taking a 20-3 lead at the end of the first quarter. The Trojans held Washington Catholic (1-6) without a field goal in the first eight minutes, and only one in a first half that ended with the Trojans on top 30-8.

The Cardinals managed 1-13 from the field in the opening half, and were guilty of 13 turnovers.

"You are going to have games like this where nothing goes right," Cardinal coach John Howell said. "At the same time from the get go, we weren't ready to go. It started back at the gym. We weren¹t focused in the walk through, we didn't have any intensity. It carried on to the first quarter here. Once we got down 20-3, it's a battle the rest of the night." Connor Sevier scored six of his game-high 17 points in the first quarter for the hosts. Connor Mowery and Travis Fleisher each added five.

Brian Brown got the lone basket for Washington Catholic. TJ Hill and Brendan Purdue each had two free throws in the first half. Colton Reed and Nick Boyd each had one.

"I thought we did some good things at the start of the second quarter, but we just couldn't buy a basket. Right now, we have trouble scoring at times.² While the rims were closed for the Cardinals in the opening half, Howell said his team¹s defense is still not where he would like.

"Until we buy into that we have to play some defense, we are going to struggle," Howell said. "We gave up baskets left and right. We just need to improve on that.² The offense woes continued through much of the game. Washington Catholic hit

8 of 32 from the field. Purdue and Brown shared scoring honors with six each.

Nick Casey was the only other Wood Memorial player to reach double figures with 10 points.

With three games left to play in three days through Saturday, Howell believes his team will have better efforts than the opener.

"I think we¹ll see a much better effort, all the way around," Howell said.

"Not just offensively or defensively, but the effort that we give. Our overall effort was not great, but I thought we had some bright spots." Nick Boyd grabbed four rebounds in the second quarter, evenly split on both ends of the floor. Howell liked the effort, and was overly pleased with the play of Hill.

"Everytime we bring Nick off the bench he brings energy," Howell said. "He plays as hard as he can. He did a good job of that. He played with a bad back, and I thought he did a lot of things you don¹t see in the scoring column, He penetrated, found some open shooters. In the long run, I think that will help us. We've just got to get everyone to play on the same night.

I think we¹ll see better efforts in the next few games." Washington Catholic¹s girls (1-9) had previously defeated the Trojans (2-9) at Wood Memorial, 40-33, Nov. 29 on the same floor.

But the Cardinals suffered the same fate as the boys team, falling behind

11-5 at the first quarter and 27-12 at the half.

"I just felt like we weren't focused," Cardinal coach Michael Hopkins said.

"Getting ourselves in a hole, I just don't understand. We have beaten this team already. They had us outsized, but you still have to box out and do the little things. I simply don¹t think we put in the effort we needed to. We just didn¹t do the little things." Audra Cox led a balanced first-half Wood attack with all of her nine points. Five different players scored, with none having less than four.

A 13-2 third quarter put the game to rest. Perkins scored Washington Catholic's points before leaving the game at the end of the quarter with a stomach problem.

Mary Anne Wichman is still missing from the Cardinal lineup with an ankle injury. Elizabeth Perkins was not in the best of health with a stomach problem, and Shaina Bradley left the game after striking the back of her head on the floor during a scrum for the ball.

Wichman is not expected back soon with the ankle injury. Perkins will hopefully be better and Bradley¹s status was unknown. Cardinal coach Michael Hopkins said she would be checked for a concussion after experiencing symptoms after the collision.

"I think she hit her head on the floor pretty well," Hopkins said, "She was feeling a little dizzy." "She has some stomach problems," Hopkins said of Perkins.

Bailey Abel, Perkins and Hannah Wild each scored six points for the Cardinals.

Both teams traveled to Gibson Southern to face the Titans Thursday in the second round.

Gibson Southern entered the boys game with a record of 0-5, while the girls were 6-4.

"I guess we'll have a run though to get ready," Hopkins said. "Gibson Southern runs the same kind of things as Wood."

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