Vanguard Shows Why it is a Top Team in the State
January 23, 2012Fountain Valley School
Earlier in the week, the Vanguard Coursers were ranked 13th among all 2A schools in the state of Colorado. After beating Limon Friday night and the Danes on Saturday, their ranking will improve even more. Their most damaging action tonight was their three-point shooting, for it seemed as though everything they put up went through the net. The Danes lost 29-65 but fought hard with a roster of eight players as compared to the Coursers' 13.
Delia Brekken won the tip, and the Danes proceeded to set up and execute their most disciplined and impressive offensive possession of the season thus far. They demonstrated patience, control and admirable passing skills, and in the process took 1.5 minutes off the clock. That was the game plan for the night, but Vanguard had other plans. On three consecutive possessions, the Danes turned the ball over against the full-court press and Vanguard scored each time. So the Danes found themselves down 0-6 quickly and had to call a timeout. The Coursers hit three three-pointers in the first quarter alone and outscored the Danes 24-4.
In the second quarter, the Coursers kept up their full-court pressure defense and the rattled Danes never really recovered. The good news for the stanza is that Vanguard got into foul trouble and sent the Danes to the line seven times. The Danes converted on five free throws. Brekken worked tirelessly in the paint, go to the basket again and again against double- and triple-team defensive coverage.
In the third quarter, Vanguard dropped back into a half-court defense, but the Danes continued to turn the ball over so the deficit was not improved by much. The Danes' bench played a good number of minutes and contributed to the game in many ways. Players began to rotate on and off the course in an attempt to get quick rests in the game.
Bailey Knecht hit a monster three-pointer in the fourth quarter and was fouled on the shot. She subsequently threw down an impressive block—her third of the night. Brekken continued to push the ball up to the basket, even as Vanguard players were hanging all over her arms and shoulders.
The Danes committed 31 turnovers in the game. Brekken led in scoring with 12 points, nine rebounds, four blocks and one steal. Clare Hamilton, the go-to ball handler for the team, had nine points, three assists and three rebounds. Heather Whitham had four points. Knecht had three points, five rebounds, five steals and three blocks. Ji Won Park had one point, one assist and one steal. Rina Onishi had one rebound. Vicky Wang had one rebound. Ellie Taylor had one rebound and two steals.
Kim Donaldson (who was out tonight due to injury) and Delia Brekken are now ranked No. 9 and No. 10, respectively, in rebounding among all 2A girls basketball players in Colorado.
The Danes will face Calhan at home on Tuesday. At 8-2, the Bulldogs will be another tough opponent.