By Tom Schultz
For the Herald
FULTON, Ill. —
Prince of Peace came out doing exactly what it wanted on defense and offense, forcing its pace in a 52-38 non-conference girls basketball win against Fulton on Saturday at Stan Borgman Court.
“The Lady Irish have playing hard, and it was good to get a win against the Steamers,” Prince of Peace coach Maggie Furlong said. “The Irish girls played a tough game against a scrappy Lady Steamer team. The Irish girls played good team defense to hold the Steamers off.”
Jackie Kokjohn scored 16 points to lead Prince of Peace.
The Irish’s defense threw the Steamers off their offensive game and forced them to rush their offense. The rushed pace of the Steamers’ offense hurt them on missed shots and turnovers, especially in the second half.
“I thought when we got in trouble was when we weren’t patient enough on offense,” Fulton coach Jesse Abbott said. “We didn’t work the ball, make enough passes. Then when we did get the ball inside like we like to, we didn’t convert on some.”
Fulton was forcing up its shots in the third quarter when the Irish came out hot with a 9-1 run. The Steamers then tried to make up the deficit all at once, rushing some of their passes, which ended with turnovers taking away the momentum they were trying to build to get back into the game.
Senior guard Sam Raab vocalized the frustration the Steamers were having shooting the ball.
“For me being a shooter, it was very frustrating (missing the shots),” she said. “I made the one 3 at the beginning of the game and then the entire rest of the game I just couldn’t make anything.”
Raab wasn’t the only one on the floor having a hard time shooting.
“It seemed like Kat’s shots weren’t falling,” Raab said, referring to teammate Katherine Wayne. “Morgan Wierema just came back from an ankle injury, (and) her shots were falling; Morgan Sanquist’s shots weren’t falling; bunch of our shooters, they just weren’t going in for us.”
The Steamers had already come from nine points down in the second quarter to close within two of the Irish, but Prince of Peace switched its defensive scheme in the third quarter, holding Fulton at bay offensively.
The first half saw the Irish march out with a 1-3-1 diamond half-court trap that they executed well enough, but Fulton was finding ways around it by the end of the second quarter.
That prompted the Irish to move to a full-court man-to-man press in the second half. The move stifled the Steamers long enough for the Irish to make their shots on offense and build a comfortable lead in the second half on their way to the win.
The Steamers will look to get their frustrations out on the court next Thursday when they travel to Erie.
PRINCE OF PEACE 52, FULTON 38
PRINCE OF PEACE — Kokjohn 4 8-10 16, Aquilani 2 4-4 9, Mulholland 0 4-4 4, Atkinson 0 5-9 5, Laufenberg 1 2-2 4, Vicks 1 0-0 2, Isenhour 3 0-1 6, Pittman 2 0-0 4
FULTON (5-9) — Beiermann 1 1-2 3, Wayne 2 4-6 8, Sanquist 5 0-0 10, Wierema 2 0-0 4, Raab 1 0-1 3, Leitzen 1 0-0 2
Prince of Peace 12 8 17 15 — 52
Fulton 7 11 10 10 — 38
3-point goals — Prince of Peace 2 (Kokjohn, Aquilani); Fulton 1 (Raab). Total fouls — Prince of Peace 17, Fulton 22. Fouled out — Wayne, Sanquist.