Erin Fish (2) and the Allen Park Jaguars scored an overtime win against Downriver League foe Truman last week.
GIRLS' BASKETBALL: Bowdell leads Allen Park over Truman (PHOTO)
Maybe last time the Allen Park girls’ basketball team played Truman, Casey Bowdell didn’t have quite as strong a night.
Maybe the team played a different defense and it didn’t have Arielle Gamble.
Okay, Bowdell had a pretty good night the last time but it was definitely a different defense and Gamble was still on the junior varsity squad.
Bowdell came up huge when it really mattered and Gamble dominated the glass all night in the Jaguars’ 46-39 overtime victory over the host Cougars.
In the loss to Truman earlier this season, Allen Park finished the game just 5-for-11 from the charity stripe.
In Thursday’s victory, Bowdell was 8-for-10 in the overtime alone.
With two big Truman scorers, the Jags knew a strong defense was key for a win.
“I’ve gotta give credit to my assistant coach Bill Borg,” Allen Park Coach Chuck Perez said. “He put in that defense to kind of contain (Judah Frazier) and (April Micheaux) and obviously the girls did the job of what they had to do.”
Truman held a 10-8 advantage after the first before the Jags kicked things up in the middle quarters.
The Cougars had a hard time getting inside and through the Jaguar wall and managed only 16 points in the second and third combined while Allen Park put up 26.
It was 20-16 at the half and a comfortable 34-26 after three for Allen Park. But the Cougars weren’t comfortable with that and made it a game right away in the fourth and held the Jags to just two points in the final quarter.
With 4:03 left to play, things got tight.
Truman was down 34-30 but a triple from Frazier put the Cougars right back in the game. Fifteen seconds later she tied the game at 34 with one free throw on a two-shot attempt.
With 2:25 to go, Caprice King came up with a field goal that gave Truman it’s first lead since the opening quarter and things got frazzling as some uncharacteristic mistakes were made and timeouts were called.
Truman still had the lead with 1:37 to go, but Allen Park got possession back when Truman didn’t inbound the ball in enough time.
With time running out, Bowdell quickly inbounded the ball and it found its way to Olivia Keeley who tied things right back up.
Some big scrambles and another big Bowdell block ran the clock out and forced overtime.
It was all Bowdell in overtime as the Cougars were forced to foul to get possession back and the senior captain went to the charity stripe 10 times, knocking down eight shots and adding a field goal to account for all the scoring.
Truman’s only points in the four-minute overtime came from King with a field goal and a free throw.
“Allen Park did a good job of making free throws in the overtime period,” Truman Coach Chad Putnam said. “It just shows you the importance of stepping to the free throw line.
Despite the loss, Putnam was pleased with his team for battling right back and making it and exciting game for the crowd.
“They showed the ability to overcome adverse circumstances (and) I think that’s an important part of not only basketball but maturing as a person and I thought my kids did that well tonight.”
The Cougars struggled with the Jaguar defense and Putnam gave Allen Park credit.
“They did a good job of taking away one of our offensive threats in April,” he said. “We had a little bit of trouble getting inside (and) some of the choices with shot selection were not good early in the game.
Perez said his team focused on where the big scorers were all night long and said confidence was a factor in a win this time around.
“It was a huge win for us,” he said. “I think it was a matter of us playing more together and being on this six-game win streak and coming in with confidence and knowing what was at stake coming up this week.”
The Jags had an all-around team effort in the win.
Bowdell finished the night with a team-high 18 points and was 10-for-13 from the charity stripe.
Keely finished with nine points and seven rebounds, Gamble had 10 rebounds and four points, Hailey Lazarek had 11 points and four boards and Erin Fish added six points.
When the Jags put pressure on Micheaux, King stepped right up and finished the night with 16 points and six rebounds.
Frazier had 13 points and was 5-for-6 from the foul line.
Micheaux had six points and 13 rebounds and Mariah Hopkins had four points and five rebounds.
The Cougars dropped to 7-4 in the league while the Jags moved to 9-2 with a big week coming up.
Truman bounced right back the following night with a dominating 48-19 victory over Lincoln Park.
The Cougars had a comfortable 16-2 lead after the first quarter, but a dominating third quarter sealed the game.
Truman shut out its visitors 20-0 in the third to all but put away the game.
Frazier scored on the opening tip-off and the Cougars went on an 8-0 run before Lincoln Park took a timeout, but the Cougars added another eight before the buzzer sounded.
Micheaux accounted for 10 of the 16 points in the opening quarter. She got right back at it in the second, scoring eight of Truman’s 10 points for a 26-8 halftime lead.
Most of the 20 points in the big third quarter came from-you guessed it- Micheaux who put up eight. Bush popped up in the quarter and also put up all six of her night’s points.
Truman only managed one basket in the final outing; a field goal from Dominique Sellers, but the game was too far out of reach for the Rails to get back in.
“It was nice to get out to an early lead with the help of the performance of April Micheaux,” Putnam said. “In this game she was clearly the best player on the floor and she did a good job of scoring around the basket in this game.”
Micheaux finished the night with a big double-double of 26 points and 15 rebounds. She was 11-for-20 from the field.
Frazier put up 10 points and four steals, Bush had six points, King finished with four points and three rebounds and Seller had two points.
“In this game, we were able to get some of our reserve players some substantial playing time,” Putnam said. “Mauricsa Dillard, Brianna Dixson, Mariah Henderson and Quartney Alchin were all able to get some time on the court and as we get into the later part of this season, we are going to need each and every player to be prepared to play in any situation that may present itself.”
Last Updated: 2/4/2014 2:33:43 PM EST