The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Sports

January 6, 2014

'New year, new Irish'

CLINTON — Central Catholic Auditorium held two teams on Saturday night where both are trying to turn the corner, but one of them turned it on a high-post screen to defeat the other.

In a cross-river rivalry, Prince of Peace defeated Fulton 50-48 to get win No. 2, thanks to a layup by Irish guard Karli Atkinson with 2 seconds remaining.

“I saw a small opening and knew I could get to the rim, and I took it,” Atkinson said.

Prince of Peace got the ball back with about 12 seconds remaining, so that gave Atkinson enough time to think about what she wanted to do.

“I knew I had to kill some time, so when the clock got to five seconds, I tried to go as far as I could,” she said.

Irish coach Scott Maddasion drew up a play for Atkinson to take the screen but was glad she called an audible when she read the defense.

“I have full confidence in her; she is an outstanding player,” Maddasion said. “She deviated from what we drew up, but I’m glad she did, and I’m proud of her and the entire team.”

Before that final play, the Irish came out scoring 16 points in the third quarter, with most coming from fast breaks.

“Coach has been telling us to push the ball as fast as we can,” Atkinson said. “We worked on that a lot over break, and I think it showed tonight.”

Atkinson ended up with 17 points, nine coming in the first half. The leading scorer for Prince of Peace was Jackie Kokjohn with 18.

The Irish never led until the final horn sounded. Fulton’s biggest lead was near the end of the first quarter, 18-8, but Fulton coach Mike Menchaca believes foul trouble and fatigue plagued the Steamers as they tried to get their first win of 2014.

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