Montesano kept its momentum going on Tuesday night, triggering its transition game to force turnovers and score on the run against host Aberdeen at Sam Benn Gym.
Senior post Jordan Spradlin led all scorers with 22 points and 10 rebounds as the Bulldogs rolled to a 63-28 non-league girls basketball win over the Bobcats.
“I thought we did a great job on the defensive end,” Montesano head coach Julie Graves said. “We talked about two different types of defenses in practices and they really came out and executed tonight. The kids did a really good job tonight.”
“The first half was hard to replicate that pressure in practice,” Aberdeen head coach Jeff Niemi said. “We didn’t handle it as well as I thought we would. I thought our defensive plan worked out well, but they got a lot of easy baskets off our turnovers. In transition, they are deadly. You can’t turn the ball over against them.”
The story has been the same for Montesano (6-1 overall) and its senior-laden squad — play an uptempo style to pressure the opposition into mistakes for easy baskets. This is what happened on Tuesday night.
Guards Hannah Quinn, Josie Talley, Josie Toyra and Shayla Floch bothered Aberdeen’s guards into turnovers and quick transition baskets. In the first quarter, the Bulldogs forced nine Bobcat turnovers. In turn, Montesano hit five of its first six shots from the field for an 11-3 lead midway through the quarter.
The pressure defense continued and Montesano benefited to finish the quarter with a 20-4 lead. Spradlin cleaned up in the paint, scoring nine of her game-high total in the first. Also within the transition offense, Quinn and Floch each dished out five assists each overall.
“Yeah, we had a few turnovers here and there, but we really executed out of transition well tonight,” Graves added. “We are trying to push that with the kids that if we can score before the defense sets up, that is to our advantage. They are starting to figure that out. We were able to get some steals and score off of that.”
Montesano continued in the second quarter with its pressure defense, but also worked the ball inside to Spradlin more often. Aberdeen senior Jillian Swor had the tough task of defending Spradlin, mostly fronting the 6-1 Montesano post to deny her the ball. The Bulldogs stayed inside and finished with a 37-14 halftime lead.
In the third, the Bulldogs pulled away. On a combination of inside work from Spradlin and perimeter work from Quinn, Talley and Cheyann Bartlett, who played in spurts due to illness, Montesano secured a 20-5 quarter and a 57-19 lead.
Freshman reserve Emily Walsh led Aberdeen (4-2 overall) in scoring with seven points, six of them scored in the fourth quarter when both teams emptied their benches. Swor led the team with five rebounds and Angel Jones was cited for her energy in the game.
“I think the girls saw what our zone offense can do and we executed well,” Niemi said. “We still played hard in the second half. I wanted to see if we could win the second half and the girls went out there and tried hard to do that.”
On Thursday, Montesano travels to Ilwaco. On Dec. 29, Aberdeen hosts Peninsula.
Montesano 20 17 20 6 — 63 Aberdeen 4 10 5 9 — 28
Montesano (63) — Quinn 9, Bartlett 5, Lovell 3, Talley 6, Toyra 8, Floch 4, Spradlin 22, Hutchings 4, Ekerson, Grubb, Granstrom, Perkinson. FG — 25-56. FT — 11-21.
Aberdeen (28) — Buckman 1, Glanz, Gallinger 5, Heikkila 1, Rabung 4, Swor 5, Jones 3, Slyter, Roberts, Krenz 2, Walsh 7. FG — 10-42. FT — 7-12.
JV — Montesano 34, Aberdeen 10. Erica Alvarez and Sophia Reed 10 points each for Monte.