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GIRLS' BASKETBALL: Jags dominate on the road, knock off Annapolis

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In the second to last game of the season the Allen Park girls’ basketball team dominated from start to finish en route to a 54-37 victory over host Annapolis.

An 8-0 run to start the game set the tone for the rest of the contest and despite a few pushes from the Cougars, the Jags had an easy time on the road.

Scoring from four different players helped Allen Park to a 13-3 lead after the first quarter. Annapolis did not score until over halfway into the quarter and a 3-point field goal was the only points of the quarter.

Allen Park’s Arielle Gamble helped to keep the Cougars at bay early on. She entered the game with two minutes left in the first quarter and got right to work doing what she does best, grabbing five rebounds in two minutes.

The Jags continued to pull away in the second and got help at the charity stripe when the team combined for a 4-for-6 quarter.

They edged the hosts 9-8 in the quarter for a 22-11 halftime lead.

At the halftime break, Annapolis Coach Lynn Ward talked to his team about getting their shots off and putting more pressure on the visitors.

The talked worked and the Cougar offense started to show up in the second half, keeping right on the heels of the Jaguars.

“We talked about pressuring the ball; that we were gonna go man on them and we did,” Ward said. “We also talked about when you’re open, you’ve gotta shoot the ball.

“In the first half, we’re passing those shots because we lost our confidence. That was my point at halftime.”

The Cougars’ shots started making their marks more in the fourth quarter, when they matched the Jags point for point with 13 each.

Dawnelle Dixon hit an early three to make it a 10-point game (37-27).

With 4:52 left to play the Cougars were only down by seven but Allen Park got right back to work, pushing ahead for the win.

Allen Park Coach Chuck Perez was pleased with the win but said his team did have some mishaps on the defensive side of things.

“I wasn’t too happy as far as some of the defensive play that we had,” he said. “I think we let too many points up in this game.

“But we made some adjustments; they responded to that so the coaches were pretty happy.”

Perez said his team was just looking to tighten things up offensively and work on being more patient as they prepare for districts next week and Perez saw positive moments on the floor.

“Just them playing together on the court,” Perez said about his team’s strengths on Wednesday. “Being more in control of what they need to do more or less (and) coaching themselves.

“By this time of the year they should know what they’re gonna do.”

Casey Bowdell shined for the Jags all night and led all scorers with a double-double of 18 points and 10 rebounds.

Aly Kubik and Hailey Lazarek had eight points each and Erin Fish finished with six.

Gamble finished the night with seven rebounds.

Dixon dominated for the Cougars, finishing with 13 points including three triples and also brought down seven boards.

Kirstyn Jacobs had eight points and five boards and Brianna Coffman and Fleenary had four points each.

Ward was pleased with the play from Jacobs off the bench as well as Coffman. Despite the loss, he was not disappointed in the effort.

“We didn’t get outworked, we got outplayed,” he said. “I know they’re a tough team and I wanted to play them as hard as we could and get ready for what we have on Saturday.

“I was happy with the way we played. Could some of them have played better? Yeah. But I can’t knock the effort. The effort was there all night; we just couldn’t get over the edge.”

Each team will wrap up its season this week before districts start on Monday.

Annapolis will take on non-league Riverview before facing a big Crestwood team on Saturday. Allen Park will wrap up its season tomorrow with a league makeup game against Kennedy.

Last Updated: 2/19/2014 11:22:27 PM EST