Shiloh Christian did well in keeping Minot Ryan’s Twin Towers under control Saturday afternoon.
However, the rest of Ryan’s team did well in picking up the slack.
Gabbie Bohl and Hannah Stewart, a pair of high-scoring 6-foot-1 sophomores, totaled 16 points through three quarters, but the No. 1-ranked Lions still carried a commanding
17-point advantage into the final eight minutes in a 59-39 victory over the No. 8 Skyhawks at the Shiloh Christian gymnasium.
Bohl and Stewart entered the contest averaging nearly 38 points per game combined, but had six tallies each by the intermission and eight apiece by the end of the third quarter. Even so, Ryan led 28-23 at halftime before breaking it open in the third by outscoring the Skyhawks 20-8. Anika Rovig netted 17 of her game-high 18 points in the first 24 minutes — 10 in the decisive third quarter.
“We do depend a lot on our inside game, but the other girls know that there will be days when teams are going to take that away from us,” said Ryan coach Julie Stewart, whose team improved to 8-0. “Shiloh did a nice job defending Gabbie and Hannah, but other girls stepped up. That was the key for us today, that and our defense. I thought our defense played very well against a very good offensive team.”
Bohl had six points in the fourth quarter and finished with 14. Stewart, who is averaging nearly 21 points per game, finished with 12. She also collected 11 rebounds and blocked five shots.
“Hannah didn’t have a good scoring day, but she came up big in other ways,” coach Stewart said. “Both she and Gabbie also did a nice job passing the ball. Even when the shots aren’t falling, they know there are other ways to help the team.”
Shiloh coach Jim Petrik said he couldn’t have been happier with his team’s defensive effort in the first half. The Skyhawks’ free-throw shooting was another matter. Shiloh made just eight of 18 attempts from the charity stripe in the first 16 minutes. They missed eight of their last 10 tries.
“We executed our defensive game plan to a T. We did the things we had hoped to do, especially against their two big girls,” he said. “We left a lot of points off the board, though, with the free-throw shooting. But even though we weren’t making our free throws, we were still down by only five points. We felt good at halftime.”
The Skyhawks felt even better in the opening minute of the third quarter after an Abby Muggerud basket cut the Ryan lead to 28-25. However, the Lions went on to dominate the rest of the frame. First, Ryan ran off eight straight points to extend its advantage to 11, 36-25. After Beth Muggerud’s personal 5-0 spurt, the Lions closed out the frame on a
12-1 run that Rovig finished off with a buzzer-beating
3-pointer. Rovig scored eight points in the last 1:31.
“We came out in the second half and settled into our game,” coach Stewart said. “We moved the ball well and did a better job executing our offense.”
Shiloh managed just three field goals in the quarter.
“With their size, they made it tough for us to go inside,” Petrik said. “We had some decent looks outside, but those shots weren’t falling. We struggled and good teams will take advantage of that.”
Shiloh’s first field goal of the fourth quarter didn’t come until the 1:58 mark, after the Lions went ahead 57-33.
Beth Muggerud and Regan Watson finished with 11 and 10 points, respectively, for the Skyhawks, who fell to 8-2 overall. Leading scorer Paige Emmel was held to two free throws.
Despite the loss, Petrik said his team learned some valuable lessons.
“You schedule regular-season games with teams like this to find out what your weaknesses are and what you have to do to get to the next level,” he said. “We want to be playing our best basketball by tournament time. We learned a few things today, things that are going to help us down the road.”
Ryan 12 28 48 59
Shiloh 10 23 31 39
RYAN (59): Anika Rovig 18, Gabbie Bohl 14, Hannah Stewart 12, Quinn Harmon 7, Maddie Wald 6, Laurin Leidholt 2. Totals 21 14-19.
SHILOH (39): Beth Muggerud 11, Regan Watson 10, Mikayla Forness 6, Brenna Jessen 5, Krista Ulmer 3, Abby Muggerud 2, Paige Emmel 2. Totals 13 12-25 39.
3-pointers: R 3 (Rovig 3), SC Jessen 1). Fouls: R 18, SC 16. Fouled out: Shiloh, Watson