Defense propels Molloy in rematch – QNS.com

Defense propels Molloy in rematch

After Molloy allowed Mary Louis’s talented point guard Casey Shevlin to erupt for 17 second-half points in their previous meeting - their first league loss of the year - the Stanners made sure to keep her under wraps this time around.
The extra attention paid off, as Molloy bottled up Shevlin - and Mary Louis - 52-33. Shevlin, hounded all evening by double- and triple-teams, managed just six points.
“That was the key,” said Molloy Coach Marty Towey of his team’s defense on Shevlin. “We wanted to shut her down.”
In the previous meeting, Molloy played mostly zone, allowing Shevlin room to shoot from the perimeter. But this time, Towey resorted to man-to-man, rotating the quick point guard Christine Harnischfeger, and the 5-foot-9 small forward Janine Maser on Shevlin, the junior guard.
“I made that my goal in practice to work on my defense,” Maser said.
With third place on the line, the game, played in a packed Jack Curran Gymnasium - usually reserved for the boys - was met with significant enthusiasm. But neither team could score much early on. Molloy led 23-15 at halftime, but the lead didn’t seem secure, especially against Mary Louis, notorious for their slow starts.
A 12-2 run to start the third quarter, capped by a Kerri White 3-pointer, however, put to bed any thoughts of a comeback. The Hilltoppers put six consecutive points together later on, their best offensive stretch of the evening, but White answered with five straight points as Molloy went up 40-23.
“We were looking forward to this game all week,” said White, who scored a game-high 12 points.
The win means the Stanners (14-6, 7-4 CHSAA I) get to avoid top-ranked Christ the King in the Brooklyn-Queens Diocesan playoffs until the city championship. Mary Louis, meanwhile, will most likely see them in the semifinals.
Maser, Angie Waterman (10 rebounds, three blocks) and Harnischfeger each scored nine points. Maral Javadifar led Mary Louis (11-9, 5-5 CHSAA I) with eight points.
“We were shell shocked,” Mary Louis Coach Joe Lewinger said. “They weren’t in their element. They were tentative.”

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