By Gregg A. Sims
Washington Times Herald
Washington Catholic got a shot they wanted at the time they needed, but Elizabeth Perkins’ effort to tie the game was deflected.
Washington Catholic outscored Springs Valley, 14-4, in the final quarter and had a chance for a tie as the game ended.
Perkins rebounded a missed free throw from Springs Valley guard Kiana Wininger with eight seconds left and the Cardinals trailing 40-38. Perkins took the ball the length of the court, and tried for the tie, but her shot was partially deflected by Blackhawk Morgan Meehan for the 40-38 win.
“Elizabeth got the rebound with about six seconds left, and I didn’t call a timeout,” Washington Catholic coach Michael Hopkins said.
“Elizabeth was driving full speed down the lane, and I thought she had a pretty clear path. I thought she had a chance to hit the shot, and I didn’t want to ruin her momentum. Looking back, I still think that was the right decision.”
Springs Valley (1-1) had led 38-26 with 7:07 left in the game before the Cardinals (0-3) outscored the Blackhawks 12-2 the remainder of the way.
Perkins, who led Washington Catholic with 15 points, made seven of eight free throws in the final quarter along with a basket to lead the Cardinal comeback.
While Perkins was drawing fouls, driving the lane for Washington Catholic, Mary Anne Wichman, who scored nine points for the Cardinals, added a three-pointer with 3:54 to play to cut the lead to 38-33.
Sarah Wichman made a key field goal with 1:43 to play to cut the Springs Valley lead to 38-36.
Kiana Wininger got the final two points for Springs Valley with a field goal at the 1:15 mark. Perkins then scored the final points with 14 seconds remaining on an offensive rebound.
“We did a much better job of faking a pass to the wing and then getting the ball into Elizabeth,” Hopkins said. “She’s starting to create off the middle. She split the defense a lot and drew a lot of fouls. She did a good job. We’re trying to expand her game.”
The Cardinals held an early 7-2 lead on points from Perkins and Sarah Wild. Perkins made two field goals and Wild made a three for the five-point advantage three minutes into the game.
But the Blackhawks went on a 10-point run behind Lauren Goodman, who ended the quarter with five points to share opening-quarter leadership with Storri Gadau.
Mary Anne Wichman stopped the streak with a three-pointer for the Cardinals, who made three in the quarter and five overall, as Springs Valley led 16-13 at the first stop.
The Blackhawks then won the second quarter 10-3 for a 26-16 halftime lead. Springs Valley kept the lead from 10 to 12 points after Mary Anne Wichman opened the quarter with the second of her three three-pointers. The Blackhawks ended the quarter with a 36-24 lead that seemed fairly secure.
“We’re still learning what is a good shot and when to take it,” Hopkins said after watching his team make 17 of 58 from the field. “That’s part of development, and we do a lot of shooting. We just need to get some confidence.”
But the Cardinals got 14 points in the final eight minutes as Perkins scored nine points in the comeback.
Wininger scored what proved to be the game winning basket with 1:15 to play, but she helped the Cardinals get back in the game by missing the front ends of two bonus free throws.
The Cardinals also used something of a makeshift full-court trap as the game wound down despite not having practiced it much before.
“We started really well, but we ran into a bad patch,” Hopkins said. “Our goal was to try to get into that 10-point lead at halftime, and after we got a couple of steals and baskets, it kind of woke us up. We practiced it a little bit after the North Knox game, and we did pretty well with it. There wasn’t else much we could do, trailing by 10 points. The girls did a good job utilizing it.”
Gadau led Springs Valley with 13 points and Wininger had 10. Sarah Wichman added seven for the Cardinals.
Springs Valley won the junior varsity game, 46-8.
“There times when we were just scrambling a bit,” Hopkins said. “At the end we found a way to the basket and had a nice shot. We got a good look, and that’s all you can ask for.”
SPRINGS VALLEY 16 10 10 4 — 40
WASHINGTON CATHOLIC 13 3 8 14 — 38
Springs Valley (40) — Ganau 6 1-1 13, Wining er 4 2-7 10, Goodmann 3 1-3 7, Carnes 2 0-0 4, Meehan 2 0-0 4, Seitz 1 0-0 2. Totals 18 4-11 400.
Washington Cataholic (38) — Perkins 3 9-12 15, M. Wichman 3 0-0 9, S. Wichman 3 0-0 7, H. Wild 2 0-2 4, S. WIld 1 0-0 3. Totals: 12 9-14 38.
3-point goals — Springs Vallley 0, Washington Catholic 5, M. Wichman 3, S. Wild 1, S. Wichman 1.