SAVANNAH, Mo- The Maryville girls basketball team squeaked out a closely contested game 38-30 in their opening round matchup in the Savannah Invitational Tournament.
The Spoofhounds got the win over St. Joseph Central Indians’ junior varsity squad.
Maryville struggled to find consistency in the first quarter of play versus the 2-3 zone of the Indians, but ended up outscoring Central 12-8 after the end of the first quarter.
Central worked its way back to knot the game up at 12 midway through the second. A questionable foul call late in the period kept freshman point guard Serena Sundell out until halftime. The Spoofhounds struggled to find a groove on offense after that point.
Coach Quentin Albrecht explained the foul situation is a problem that affects the whole team.
“We only run about seven or eight girls,” Albrecht said. “If any of our girls get into any type of trouble, then it’s trouble for everyone.”
Maryville trailed the Indians 17-14 at the midway point. Sundell had eight of the first half points for the Spoofhounds.
“I have to be aggressive,” Sundell said. “I can’t just stop being aggressive, I also have to play smart too.”
A flurry of points came Maryville’s way at the beginning of the third quarter helping them take the lead and eventually ending the period up three on the Indians.
Maryville took a 10-point lead late in the fourth off a Sundell steal and score following her three-pointer. Fouling and quick offence from Central led to the final score.
“Really I think it was a tale of two halves,” Albrecht said. “In the first half we didn’t really come out with very much intensity, we didn’t have very good ball pressure defensively and not defending one pass away. Just things we talk about all the time. In the second half, I feel like we did a lot better with that.”
Sundell finished with 22 points and created a multitude of scoring opportunities for herself on the defensive side of the ball as well.
“I don’t know if she picked up another foul the whole night,” Albrecht said. “She still played tremendous defensive pressure and denied the pass away, so she really used her head”
With only the second game in the books, Sundell explained the chemistry of the team has grown from what it was.
“It’s getting a lot better,” Sundell said. “We are starting to get along well and know where we are going to be at, knowing where the cuts are going to be, seeing the pass before it’s even there.”
The Spoofhounds will take on Staley in their second pool play game Nov. 30 at 5:30 p.m. in Savannah.
“We know it’s going to be a really tough game,” Albrecht said. “They’re a 5-A school that is a quality team and is coached very well, so we are just going to have to come out with our A-game. We have to start stronger than we started tonight (Nov. 28.)”