Times Sports Editor
ELLETSVILLE -- When the Northview Knights go back and look at the film from Friday's girls' basketball battle against WIC foe Edgewood, they'll see one half of basketball that they don't want to repeat and another that they want to emulate the rest of the year.
The Knights played perhaps its best half of the season in the second half, outscoring a 7-2 Mustangs squad 40-27, but it wasn't quite enough to erase a forgettable first half in a 61-54 loss to the home squad.
Northview turned the ball over 18 times in the first half and couldn't solve Edgewood's pressure on either end of the court as the Knights trailed 34-14 at halftime. However, a seemingly completely different group of Knights came out after the break and took the fight to the Mustangs in a physical final two periods, which pleased coach Lu Anne Anderson.
"We were trying to trap the ball in the first half, but I don't know if we weren't mentally in it or we were just scared because they were quick on us," Anderson said. "Instead of running the 2-2 press, we dropped and switched to a 1-2-2 to put somebody in an immediate trap instead of waiting for them to put it on the floor and I think that helped out a lot. The girls just went after it more in the second half, they really wanted to win."
The full court pressure that Northview applied in the third quarter had benefits on more than one front as the Mustangs couldn't get into any sort of offensive rhythm, hitting just two-of-10 from the field and giving the Knights some quick baskets as well.
Lauren Webster and Kelsey Searing were the main benefactors of getting to the basket following seven Edgewood turnovers in the quarter. Webster scored 12 of her 16 points in the period and Searing tallied eight points before she went down on a breakaway and left the game with a possible broken nose.
"We took a big hit when Kelsey (Searing) went out, with no foul called, with a broken nose, which I find very hard to believe," Anderson said. "But that's what you get when your on the road, I'm not saying the referees did anything to make us lose, we lost that game in the first half with too many turnovers and not making shots."
The Knights used their trapping defense to spark a 22-5 run that got them as close as 39-36 after Ali Sharton stripped the ball and fed Webster for a score. However, the Knights were already in some foul trouble in the first half after four players picked up two fouls each. The pressure defense added to that foul trouble and the Knights had to go to their bench after Phillips and Bell picked up their fourth fouls and Searing left with her injury.
The Mustangs were able to finish the third quarter on an 8-2 run on three free throws from Laura Luther, a score by Hannah Rommel and three free throws from Angela Hacker.
The Knights trailed 47-38 heading into the fourth period, but the Mustangs got a pair of early scores from Rommel to push the lead back to double-figures. Webster got the Knights back to 53-45 after a free throw, but Hacker added a bucket and two free throws to help keep the Knights at bay. Emily Phillips scored two free throws when she returned and added a late 3-pointer, but the Knights ran out of time in their rally.
"We're happy with how we played in the second half, but the girls are very upset that they lost," Anderson said. "The WIC (title) was a goal of ours this season and its' still not out of reach, but we have to take care of our business in the rest of the games."
Phillips had 11 points for the Knights and Searing added 11 points to go with six rebounds. Sampson led Northview in rebounding with 11. Sharton had five points for the Knights and Carlee Bell added four along with Sampson.
The Knights fall to 4-6 overall and 2-1 in the WIC and are off until Jan. 5 when they host Greencastle.
Bell 2-3 0-0 4, Phillips 3-8 4-6 11, Sampson 2-5 0-1 4, Webster 5-17 6-10 16, Searing 4-6 3-5 11, Sharton 2-5 1-2 5, LaTourette 0-1 0-0 0, Carter 0-0 0-0 0, McKee 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 18-50 15-26 54.
Luther 2-9 4-6 8, Miller 4-15 2-2 13, Delay 1-3 0-1 2, Rommel 7-8 1-2 15, Hacker 4-6 5-8 13, Faletic 2-3 4-8 8, Edmonson 0-0 0-0 0, Fiegle 0-4 0-0 0, Weddle 1-1 0-0 2. Totals: 20-48 14-25 61.
3-point fieldgoals -- Nv 1-5 (Phillips 1-2, Webster 0-2, Sharton 0-1), EW 3-10 (Miller 3-7, Luther 0-3). Total Rebounds -- Nv 34 (Sampson 9, Searing 6), EW 34 (Hacker 12). Total Fouls -- Nv 26, EW 20. Fouled out -- Nv (Bell, Sharton), EW (Delay). Turnovers -- Nv 26, EW 20.