Miners hold off Carson girls
Quite simply, Carson High dug too big of a hole in the first half and could never recover.
Bishop Manogue, behind the inside play of Kathryn Gray, built up a 15-point first-half lead and overcame a couple of surges by the Senators to grab a 53-45 win in a battle for a share of the Sierra League lead Saturday afternoon at Morse Burley Gymnasium.
Carson fell to 3-1 heading into Tuesday’s battle at Galena, while Manogue improved to 4-0.
“We didn’t play a very good first half,” Carson coach Todd Ackerman said. “We didn’t rotate well on defense. We have to rotate better.”
Gray took advantage of some open spots in the Carson defense to score 14 of her 20 in the first 16 minutes as the Miners built a 34-19 lead.
Freshman point guard Gabrielle Concepcion was also a thorn in Carson’s side with 11 first-half points, including five in a 9-0 Manogue run that extended the lead to double digits, 26-12.
“Tiana (McAllister-Daggs) was helping off the ball and we didn’t rotate (down to Gray) and give her help,” Ackerman said. “We gave her a lot of points. She didn’t get a lot in the second half.”
It was evident that Ackerman made some good adjustments at halftime. The Senators did a nice job on both Gray and Concepcion in the second half, holding them to a basket apiece. Carson denied Concepcion the ball and the Miners rarely looked inside at Gray.
The improved defense enabled Carson to make a run at the Miners early in the second half. Carson went on a 12-4 run, trimming the deficit to 38-31 with 1 minute, 12 seconds left. Gina Bianchi, who finished with 14 points, scored seven in that stretch including a 3-pointer. Manogue bumped the lead to 40-31 after three quarters.
“They did a good of slowing us down,” Manogue coach Richard Shaw said. “They were denying (Concepcion) the basketball.
“In that third quarter, we didn’t defend well. We gave up too many open shots and they got some open layups. We were shooting the ball too quickly and settling on jump shots.”
Carson shaved the lead to 42-36 on a basket and free throw by Whitney Nash, who finished with nine points. However, the Senators turned it over on two of their next three possessions, and the Miners scored six straight points to boost the lead to 48-36 as Gray scored twice and Lauren Luckadoo once.
“We had some opportunities,” Ackerman said. “We just couldn’t get over the hump. We played a good third quarter and we played hard. We battled back and didn’t quit.”
A 9-5 run by the Senators made it 53-45 with 1:20 left, but that’s the last time the Senators would score. The Senators were forced to foul, and the Miners knocked down six of eight shots in the final seconds to secure the win. Three of those free throws were by Concepcion, who finished with 15 points.