WHEELING - Bishop Donahue coach Don Gillis was working on an answer for the Linsly press in practice earlier in the week. By Thursday, he thought he had it.
Led by a swarming pressure defense that made Bishops feel like they accomplished something just to get the ball into their own end, and a freshman that scored 29 without breaking a sweat, the Cadets (3-1) cruised to a 63-25 victory against the Bishops (0-2) on Thursday at Stifel Field House.
Linsly’s J.J. Jackson, left, fouls Bishop Donahue’s Selena Ghaphery during Thursday night’s game.
Photo by Jim Elliott
''We walked over this press and stuff like that,'' Gillis said. ''In practice, it does good, but when you go against somebody else that's a little more talented than your second group of kids, we just didn't do a very good job of it.''
Meanwhile, Linsly freshman Dominique Patterson was turning all of those turnovers - and there were plenty of them - into points.
She had 17 of her team's 39 at halftime and added 12 more in the second half, with no real preference on whether it was a layup, a putback, or a 15-footer. She was making everything.
''She's a great player,'' Linsly coach Erica Hall said of Patterson. ''She works hard day in and day out. I didn't take her out of of the game because of that. She really works hard and deserves the time on the floor that she gets. She's a basketball player - she plays defense and offense.''
Everybody was for the Cadets on Thursday, as they started the game on a 14-0 run that ended when the Bishops' Selena Ghaphery finally knocked down a jumper with 3:46 left in the first quarter. They added a 14-2 run in the second quarter and finished the game on a 10-2 spurt.
That's getting it done on both ends.
''We don't have much size so we have to work on our speed and defense,'' Hall said. ''We were getting a little selfish reaching. We were just telling the girls that when we're patient and we play solid defense, they'll give us the ball, we don't have to take it from them.''
J.J. Jackson and Miriam Nwachukwu, working her way back from injury, each added eight points for Linsly, which has begun the season sandwiching a pair of dominant victories at home around a road loss to Trinity.
Ghaphery finished with 11 points for Bishop Donahue.
''The press was killing us,'' Gillis said. ''Heck, they got most of their points off the press. They didn't have to set their offense up hardly at all. And when they did set it up, if they would miss the shot, they'd get the rebound and put it right back up and in.''