Week two is in the books of girls basketball season and we’ve got some stuff to talk about. Each Sunday, yours truly will have a new column to talk about some of the important details from the week gone by.
Sit back, grab your coffee and see what was important to Bounce this week.
What makes this past Tuesday more different than others? There was a big swing in games that a year ago weren’t very close contests. And it makes Bounce reassess some things heading into this week’s first power poll of the regular season (come see me Tuesday for that).
It started at Snider in a game yours truly took in to tip off the season. We knew it could be a good one, because Huntington North was critically underrated by most coming into the season. But did we expect what we got? A freshman making major waves for the Vikings, Taylor Double having one of the best single games we may see all season, a buzzer beater and a Viking win. While Double’s performance could have been predicted, nobody else had that other stuff on their preseason bingo card.
The win, which I am still impressed by, swings the Vikings back from a seven point loss in the meeting last year. And while Double and buzzer beater certainly were the underlying focus, I really do feel like the emergence, day one, of Molly Daugherty is the top headline.
Also on Tuesday, a year after a tough loss to West Noble, it was Columbia City dominating the Chargers. The Eagles won every single quarter including 17-10 in the first and 24-5 in the third. In fact, in the middle quarters of the game, Columbia City outscored West Noble 35-9.
Kyndra Sheets and Molly Baker each had 15 points in the win as Columbia City had four different girls in double figures. Columbia City hit 8 three pointers to West Noble’s zero. The Eagles had 16 steals and outdid the Chargers in basically every category you can see. It was a major swing from a year ago.
As predicted by yours truly, Jay County topped South Side on Tuesday in a major win for the Patriots. Last season, it was a 16 point loss for the Patriots and this year, they won by 11. That is a major swing in momentum for Jay County. Five different Patriots scored in double figures, led by Renna Schwieterman’s 22 and followed by 12 from Madison Dirksen.
Finally, we got to see Eastside beat Blackhawk Christian in what was a bit of a surprise behind 14 points from Paige Traxler.
Tuesday was a lot of fun and shifted a lot of things for now.
THE NEW MERCY RULE
The new mercy rule in high school basketball this season has been a divisive one from the time it was announced. We’ve already seen it play out a few times this season on the girls side, but no instance more glaring than Saturday’s SAC win for Northrop over Concordia Lutheran.
And it actually an argument for the rule as Northrop had three quarters of 25, 27 and 20 points while in that time, Concordia scored just 25 total points. This thing was totally out of hand going to the fourth quarter so there is some credence to the idea that we just needed to speed this thing up. Then again, it led to what Bounce can only guess was a painful 6-3 fourth quarter. So for the argument of excitement and getting bench and JV players some varsity reps, it didn’t work out.
All of that said, big credit to the Bruins as they are now 2-0 on the young season, something they haven’t done since 2017. Saniya Jackson looks fresh coming off an injury and scored 19 points, a game high, in the win and twin sister Nevaeh Jackson scored 15 with the duo going 12-of-20 from the field. We knew all along that they would do this, but the scoring threat that the duo adds to Northrop is outstanding. On the other end, they combined for 14 steals (7 a piece).
Northrop as a team had 30 steals, which only enhances that other preseason though we had that this is going to be a team with too much defensive fire power for most opponents. J’Asia Scott added six steals to the effort.
SOUTH SIDE REBUILD?
Despite having one of the best players in the area, South Side has struggled out of the gate with losses to Jay County, Bishop Luers and Northridge this week.
Both of those teams range from solid to good. But maybe South Side is the team we are looking at that needs to see some growth quickly. Olivia Smith and Justice Billingsley have high outputs but the team shot only 25 percent from the field in the Bishop Luers loss that will have them climbing back in the SAC. Addie Shank scored 17 in the win for the Knights while a freshman, Reese Rhodenhamel, added 11 points.
On Saturday, the Archers fell big to Northridge and gave up a program record 35 points to Northridge’s Julia Mantyla. Again, it was Smith and Billingsley doing just fine, but the Archers lacking the depth behind them. I am really intrigued to see how South Side bounces back because knowing Smith’s drive and the seriousness of coach Juanita Goodwell, there will be changes made.
And I like that. Rebuilding doesn’t just have to happen in the offseason. Goodwell has long been willing to adapt and adjust throughout seasons. That will make South Side a team that will continue to be a threat because she won’t just let this group linger in any kind of mediocrity.
In the midst of a weird week at Angola, Lauren Leach started things with a 24 point outing against Carroll….Blackhawk Christian put four different players in double figures on Saturday, led by Ema Kline‘s 13 points….Don’t sleep on Bellmont, a big unknown this season, as they went 2-1 but looked great in wins. Sydney Keane led them with 16 on Tuesday and Haley Cole had 20 on Saturday….Wayne‘s week sees their schedule evened out at 2-2 but they did start 2-0 for the first time since 2009 with a win over Blackford on Tuesday. Sydney Gorman hit five threes in that win over Blackford….Garrett had a balanced attack Wednesday in a win over Heritage, but it is important to pay attention to Nataley Armstrong‘s 11 point/11 assist effort. Is she going to be one of the assist leaders in the state again?….Central Noble won the battle of the Noble County schools against East Noble on Thursday behind Madi Vice‘s 22 points and 14 from Meghan Kiebel.
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