The Tyrone girls basketball team’s 59-51 loss to Clearfield last Wednesday had repercussions for the Lady Eagles, most notably knocking them out of the hunt for a piece of the Mountain League championship.
But allowing nearly 60 points to a team they limited to 17 in December has also had ramifications for the Lady Eagles opponents. If anything, the loss rejuvenated a defensive mindset, and the teams Tyrone played last weekend felt that.
After limiting Central to 27 points and four single-digit scoring quarters Friday, the Lady Eagles were just as stingy Saturday against the No. 2-ranked 1A team in District 6, holding St. Joseph’s Academy more than 20 points below its per-game average in a 49-24 victory at the Tyrone Area Middle School.
Tyrone’s defense smothered the Lady Wolves in the first half, allowing only eight points — just two in the second quarter — to by 23 at halftime.
Not much changed with the Lady Eagles’ defensive game plans, according to Coach Luke Rhoades, but their passion to carry them through saw a marked upswing.
“I just think we have been more focused and more committed to what our goals are,” he said. “Despite holding them down, I still think we need to play better on-the-ball defense.”
Tyrone improved to 16-5 with one game remaining tonight at home against 5A Hollidaysburg. The Lady Wolves fell to 14-7.
The Lady Eagles were sharp offensively in the first half, making 12 of 20 shots, including an 8-for-12 showing in the first quarter. After the first four minutes, Sydney Shaw had connected on a pair of threes and Jaida Parker had four points on drives to the hoop to open a 12-2 lead. Shannon Shaw came off the bench to score from deep and Stephanie Ramsey made a three-pointer at the buzzer to make it 20-6 at the end of the first frame.
Ramsey, who finished with 11 points for her third straight double-figure scoring effort, made two more from beyond the arc in the second. At the same time, the Lady Eagles’ defense was limiting the Lady Wolves to 1-for-9 shooting and clearing the defensive glass consistently. A 7-0 run to close the half had Tyrone up 31-8 at the break.
“We boxed out much better,” said Rhoades.
Rhoades began mixing and matching his lineup early in the third and St. Joseph’s used a pair of runs — 7-0 and 6-0 — to get the lead down to 16 before Parker made a three at the buzzer to extend the lead to 40-21.
After making 5 of 12 shots in the third, the Lady Wolves went cold again in the fourth, again making only 1 of 9. Tyrone also began taking better care of the basketball, recovering from a five-turnover third to register zero turnovers in the fourth.
“It’s important to be playing the best we can as we prepare for the playoffs,” said Rhoades.
TYRONE 49, ST. JOSEPH’S ACADEMY 24
ST. JOSEPH’S — Marsh 0 0-0 0; Simander 4 1-2 10; Youngmark 0 0-0 0; Mallison 0 0-0 0; Poston-Cooper 3 0-2 6; Hershbine 0 0-0 0; Mangene 1 0-0 2; Moon 2 2-2 6. TOTALS: 10 3-6 24. TYRONE — Lewis 0 0-0 0; Ramsey 4 0-0 11; Fusco 3 0-0 6; Sh. Shaw 1 0-0 3; Ronan 0 0-0 0; Getz 1 1-2 3; Saltsgiver 0 0-0 0; Parker 5 0-0 11; Christine 0 0-0 0; Gailey 0 0-0 0; Sy. Shaw 5 2-4 15; Brodzina 0 0-0 0; Welsh 0 0-0 0. TOTALS: 19 3-6 49. 3-POINT GOALS: St. Joseph’s 1 (Simander), Tyrone 8 (Sy. Shaw 3, Sh. Shaw 1, Parker 1, Ramsey 3)
Score by Quarters