Ineffective defense means long loss for Lady Rams
Concord came to Shepherd’s Butcher Center with only a 5-6 overall record. Success had been sporatic for the Lady Mountain Lions.
When confronted with the match-up zone defense seen from Shepherd, the Mountain East Conference rival feasted on the many openings it found with its passes and dribble-drives in close for the highest of percentage shots.
Concord scored 53 points in the second half, making an inordinately high 69 percent of its field goal attempts and 7-for-8 from the foul line in easing its way to a comfortable 88-64 win.
The Shepherd zone was vulnerable to most anything Concord wanted to do. Passes and dribblers came through the zone and found the various open spaces available to the Concord blitz.
An early Concord lead was at 11 points by the close of the first half.
Expansion was on Concord’s mind.
And after the first 15 minutes of the second half, the Concord lead had ballooned to over 30 points.
Unforced turnovers had bitten Shepherd in a solemn first half where it once scored only three points in a five-minute time frame.
Concord didn’t run off and hide while Shepherd was barren on the scoresheet only because it could score only five points in that same span of barren basketball.
But the second half was full of possibilities for the observant Mountain Lions.
With Jacqueline Kester, Andrea Bertrand, Sissy Wagner, Leslie Mack and Sammi Webster all reaching double figures in scoring, the Mountain Lions reeled off 53 points and even had a whole unit of reserves scoring in the final stages.
Shepherd’s unrelenting troubles even followed the Lady Rams to the offensive end, where the home team went only 7-for-16 (43.8 percent) from the free throw line, was dulled by 21 turnovers and made only 37 percent of its field goal tries.
Without Gabby Flinchum’s 21 points (on 10-of-16 from the field) and 11 rebounds, Shepherd might have been more troubled than it was.
The conference loss on its home floor by the substantial 24-point margin had Shepherd burdened with a 2-11 overall record and 2-7 mark in its league.
Afterward, Concord’s 14 players ate the pizza they were provided while perched in one of the sets of end zone bleachers. They watched the men’s game and cheered and applauded when the Mountain Lions rallied to send that game into overtime. But the Concord men weren’t facing a thin match-up zone defense … and the Lady Mountain Lions had to be content with the extra cheese and tomato sauce concoction they munched away on.