WEST CHESTER — Mercy McAuley frustrated Wayne’s girls basketball team with numerous passes on each possession before finding an open player along the baseline or inside the paint to post a 45-36 victory over the Lady Warriors on Friday at Lakota West.
It didn’t help that Wayne took no foul shots the entire game while McAuley sank 11 of 13 from the free throw line. The referees called a tight game and slapped Wayne with five first quarter fouls, four of which came in the final minute of the quarter. After that Wayne’s players appeared to be hesitant to play a little less aggressively the remainder of the half..
Wayne took a 13-8 lead but McAuley got a pair of baskets and a free throw from Alexa Fleming to go up 17-16 entering the second quarter. The Wolves held a 26-25 at halftime and led the remainder of the game.
The Lady Warriors woes began in the second quarter and continued the remainder of the game. Wayne came up with a few steals that led to scores but also committed a few uncharacteristic turnovers after making a steal. In the third quarter the Lady Warriors missed shots on three consecutive possessions, committed a turnover and got slapped with a couple of player control fouls.
Destiny Bohanon kept Wayne in the game by snaring a rebound to score and knocking down a triple to cut McAuley’s lead to 33-30. Trailing 35-30 entering the fourth quarter Wayne appeared to be trying too hard and more mistakes came as a result. A turnover on the first possession of the quarter followed by a steal that got negated by another turnover saw things rapidly go south for Wayne.
Fleming scored to increase the Wolves’ lead to seven and Wayne turned the ball over yet again. Ashley Tudor drew a foul from Bohanon and sank both shots. After a jump ball fell in favor of McAuley more trouble arose. Aubryanna Hall came up with a steal and drove inside only to be slapped with her third player control foul of the game. Hall came up with another steal along the sideline but stepped out of bounds.
Nyla Hampton came up with a steal and Hall scored to cut the deficit to 39-32 with 3:05 left. Bohanon tried to come up with a steal but fouled Fleming who sank both free throws. Hampton and Bohanon scored on the next two possessions to make it 41-36, but from there McAuley killed the clock with efficient passing and went 4 for 4 from the free throw line to keep Wayne off the scoreboard down the stretch.
“We are not a very good basketball team right now,” said Wayne Coach Travis Trice. “I am not doing a good job as a coach by getting through to my players. I don’t have their attention for whatever reason. I think I am doing everything that I know to do as a coach, but it is not working with this team for whatever reason and we have to figure it out. We have too many good basketball players to go out and score 11 points in a half and 36 points in a game. If you are not sharing the ball and you are not ready to shoot and not ready to drive and be strong when you go to the basket, then that is what happens… you score 11 points. It wasn’t their defense; it was more about what we did or didn’t do for that matter. That is really on us as a coaching staff.”
Too late for press time, Wayne played Lakota West at 7:20 p.m. Saturday on day two of the Kemba Classic.
WAY 16 25 30 36 – 36
McA 17 26 35 45 – 45
Wayne: Charity Miller 1-0-3, Nyla Hampton 3-0-6, Kyra Willis 1-0-2, Destiny Bohanon 5-0-11, Olivia Trice 1-0-2, Aubryanna Hall 4-0-9, Jaida Wolfork 1-0-3. Totals: 16-0-36.
McAuley: Alexa Fleming 5-5-16, Alexandria Smith 4-3-13, Jenna Schoster 2-0-5, Ashley Tudor 4-3-11. Totals: 15-11-45.
3-point goals: Wayne 4 (Miller, Bohanon, Hall, Wolfork); McAuley 4 (Smith 2, Fleming, Schoster).
Records: Wayne 6-3, Mercy McAuley 6-2.
Reach Ron Nunnari at 684-9124, via email Rnunnari@aimmediamidwest.com or on Twitter @Englewood_Ind