HAMLET — After last year’s rout on the road at Argos, Oregon-Davis was looking for a little revenge at home Thursday night.
They got it.
The Class A No. 2 Lady Cats used their signature high-pressure defense to hassle the visitors into 36 turnovers while capitalizing on 27 fouls by the Dragons with 22-of-34 shooting from the line to claim a lopsided 79-53 win over their Sectional 51 rivals at home at The Den.
“There was definitely a revenge factor because number one, we don’t like to lose to anybody, and we definitely don’t like to lose to anyone that’s in our sectional,” said OD girls basketball coach Terry Minix. “The kids knew that in the back of their minds.
“It was just a good team effort. We were happy that everybody played hard.”
OD did what the Cats do — namely, pressing and trapping for most of 32 minutes to create chaos on the floor. The result was not only 39 points off a prolific 36 turnovers by the Dragons, but also 27 Argos fouls as the home team wore down the visitors with relentless pacing and transition attacking.
“The biggest difficulty every team that faces them goes through is being able to simulate that aggressiveness of that press in your practices; you can’t simulate that,” said Argos head coach Gary Teel. “The kids I thought for the most part did a fairly decent job handling the pressure because we had to handle it for four quarters. The thing we were more disappointed in probably was we made a lot of half court bad decisions with the basketball at times. If we could’ve cut some of those half court decisions down where we just lost a pass or just didn’t make a good decision with their halfcourt trap we’d have gotten a lot more shot opportunities.”
Junior guard Ashley Campbell powered her team with 28 points, seven steals and five assists, while Jesse Avarone made up for lost time after being sidelined with injury at Argos last year, scoring 21 points with a double-double of 15 rebounds. Haley Collings and Alicia McIntosh each scored 11, meanwhile, as the Cats claimed their fourth straight win following a similar 77-47 blowout of John Glenn at The Den Tuesday night.
“When you get six, seven and eight deep, when somebody’s not doing well or having foul problems or it’s just not one of their nights, then somebody else steps up,” said Minix of his team. “Haley’s been doing it the last three games, but she had a little bit of foul problems. She still had 11 points but she didn’t rebound, and Jesse came out and rebounded… Jesse’s shot wasn’t falling like we wanted, but Ashley’s was. Everybody picks up everybody. That’s kind of our motto, ‘Next man up’, and if Ashley’s not hitting, then Alicia is, and that’s what makes a good team.”
Argos was led by Shelby Sanders’ 12 points in the loss as the junior guard knocked down four 3-pointers to go with two assists and two steals before fouling out midway through the fourth quarter.
Sanders buried three straight triples as Argos opened the second half on an 11-2 run to cut a near 20-point halftime deficit back down to 10 at 39-29 at the 5:05 mark of the third period. But the Dragons were forced to sit her when she picked up her fourth foul less than two minutes later, and OD halted the run to push the advantage back to 61-33 headed into the final frame.
“Shelby came out and hit four 3s. She hit three in a row and right then she gets her fourth foul, and we’ve got to take her out,” said Teel. “That was a big turning point in the game when we had to sit her because she was really hot for us.”
“Give Argos credit, they kept at it, they cut the lead to 10 at one point. Then you could just see the girls put their feet down and say this is not going to get going again and we were able to get into our press and do some things where they started throwing the ball back around,” said Minix.
Also in double figures for the Dragons was freshman Valerie Rospopo with 10 points playing big stretches up — along with sophomore Shacoda Leed — after leading the Argos JV with 10.
“We had to save Shacoda and Val two quarters because we knew that we would have to give Karlee (VanDerWeele)and Shelby rest,” said Teel. “They got an opportunity to play tonight against a very good basketball team, and the pressure’s only going to make them better players. Val comes up and has a nice game; she hits three 3s. Val’s improving throughout the season, Shacoda’s improving, and it’s nice to see a freshman come up and hit those shots.”
OD improves to 13-3 on the season while Argos slips to 8-7.
Both teams enter Bi-County Tournament play next Tuesday when OD hosts Glenn and Argos travels to Triton.
• OREGON-DAVIS 79, ARGOS 53
Argos: 8 18 33 53
Oregon-Davis: 20 37 61 79
ARGOS (53): Karlee Vanderweele 9, Shelby Sanders 12, Kelsy Kring 0, Amanda Middleton 6, Libby Moyer 7, Kayla Prochno 6, Shacoda Leed 2, Val Rospopo 10, Mariah Lineberry 0, Fishburn 1; Totals: 20 5-13 53.
OREGON-DAVIS (79): Ashley Campbell 28, Alicia McIntosh 11, Jesse Avarone 21, Lexi Minix 4, Haley Collings 11, Taylor Kranenburg 2, Riley Trott 2, Kendra Sauer 0, Zoe Seese 0, Ashley Clark 0, Katie Marsh, Lincy Jones 0; Totals: 24 22-34 79.
3-pointers: Argos 8 (Sanders 4, Rospopo 3, Vanderweele), Oregon-Davis 9 (Campbell, 5, Avarone 3, McIntosh); Turnovers: Argos 36, OD 13; Rebounds: Argos 40 (Prochno 13), OD 40 (Avarone 15); Steals: Argos 7 (Sanders 2, Moyer 2), OD 25 (Campbell 7); Assists: Argos 8 (Sanders 2, Kring 2); OD 15 (Campbell 4, Avarone 4); Fouls (fouled out): Argos Argos 27 (Sanders), Oregon-Davis 17 (Collings).
Records: OD 13-3, Argos 8-7
JV score: OD 35 (Kranenburg 12), Argos 28 (Rospopo 10)