Women of Troy blitz the Bulldogs
North Liberty Leader
IOWA CITY– Conventional wisdom suggests that when an 8-5 team takes on a 5-7 squad, the lesser-record holding team should have a tough fight on their hands if they have any hope of pulling off an upset.
Conventional wisdom did not take into account what happens when the West High Women of Troy return to the hardwood after a tough loss.
“They’re (Bettendorf) a good ball club, and we wanted to come out and be really aggressive,” West coach B.J. Mayer said after the game. “I thought the difference for us tonight was we were looking to be aggressive scoring wise, getting to the rim, and not worrying about getting fouled. We got a lot of easy baskets and things like that.”
West High (5-7 at game time) dominated the Bettendorf Bulldogs (8-5 at game time) from the start, never let up, and never looked back as they won handily 63-35 in a non-conference contest Tuesday, Jan. 21.
Mollie Mason opened up West’s campaign with a field goal, Mikaela Morgan hit the first of three 3-point goals (all made in the first half) and Grace Tafolla sank a bucket for a quick 11-3 lead, prompting a Bulldog time-out. West took the first period 20-11 and held the high ground at the half with a 34-16 lead.
Jesse Harder nailed a 3-point shot to open the second half for West and had a rim-riding field goal late in the period, which ended 51-20 to the Women of Troy’s advantage. Tafolla opened the final eight minutes with a 3-point goal, the fifth of the night for the squad. Mayer pulled his starters, but was dismayed when the Bulldogs kept up the first-half pressure, and kept their starters in the game. Despite a series of Bettendorf goals, Mayer held firm with his reserves. After the game, Mayer and Bettendorf coach Pat Finn had a terse conversation as Mayer expressed his displeasure.
“We don’t do that,” Mayer told the media after the game. “We try to handle things the way you’re supposed to play the game. Our (younger) kids don’t get a lot of time… they deserve that time, so we’re trying to make them better.”
Morgan led West High with 29 points and tried to make sense of the mis-match. “I think the loss at (Cedar Rapids) Jefferson really fired us up for this game,” Morgan said. “We knew we had the potential to beat them and we just came out ready to play right away.”
Iowa City West (63)
Morgan 9-11 2-2 29. Tafolla 4-9 2-2 13. Mason 2-4 202 6. Steigleder 1-3 0-0 2.Halvorson 1-3 0-0 2. Lozano-Dobbs 3-3 3-3 9. Harder 3-5 0-0 9. Tauchen 0-2 2-4 2. Huinker 0-0 1-2 1.
3-point goals: Iowa City West 5-11 (Morgan 3, Tafolla 1, Harder 1).
Rebounds: Iowa City West 33 (Mason 6, Morgan 6, Halverson 6).
Assists: Iowa City West 14 (Steigleder 4, Tafolla 4, Morgan 4).