ROCHESTER — The state tournament has a way of getting under some players’ skins.
Such was the case for the John Glenn Lady Falcons Wednesday as they dug themselves a hole against Mishawaka Marian and were never quite able to get out in a 42-36 Sectional 19 loss at Rochester.
The Knights play Rochester — which beat St. Joseph’s in the nightcap Wednesday — in a semifinal Friday at 7:30 p.m.
“We got rattled at the start and got behind and never could get ourselves into position to catch up,” said Glenn girls basketball head coach John Willoughby. “I think our weakness with the ball — usually it’s one person; tonight it was multiple people mishandling the ball, not catching it, not going strong to the basket — to me that’s exactly what happened.”
The Falcons surrendered five turnovers against the press for six Marian points in the opening quarter and couldn’t find an offensive rhythm as they scuffled to a 1-of-7 shooting mark in the frame and fell behind 10-3.
Glenn got rolling in the second period, starting the frame with a 5-0 mini-run and eventually outscoring the Knights 12-9 to enter the half down a manageable four points, 19-15.
“We couldn’t run anything initially because we’d throw it and somebody would drop it. How many times did you see kids drop it? It wasn’t anything other than start playing basketball instead of worrying about everything else. I don’t know what was going on,” Willoughy said.
“We’re not a physically strong team anyway so it’s tough when you’ve got pressure on you, but it’s the tournament and you’ve done it all year long so what the heck?”
The two teams played evenly in the third to enter the final period with a 29-24 Knights lead before four unanswered points by Glenn senior forward Jacy Borlik — who led all scorers with 23 points — whittled her team’s deficit to a single point, 29-28 with 6:29 on the game clock.
Kathleen Kavanagh — who led her team with 15 points Wednesday — buried a big 3 from the wing to push the lead back to four, but the Falcons answered back once more as Borlik split a pair of charity tosses drawing a foul on the baseline, and Katie Dreessen hit a jumper from the lane on a Dillyn Schleg feed to bring Glenn within one once more, 32-31 at the 2:51 mark.
Borlik answered a traditional 3-point play by Marian’s Kaitlin Barnard at the 2:47 stop with her own and-one after scoring out of a double team in the low post with 2:24 to go, bringing the Falcons to within one point again at 35-34, but that was as close as the Falcons ever got as Marian rattled off a 7-2 game-closing run.
The Falcons bid good-bye to senior point guard Cayla Ochs and Borlik, who surpassed the 1,000-point mark in her final game with Glenn, reaching a career total of 1,002.
“It’s a nice achievement,” said Willoughby. “There’s a lot of pressure to get there, but I thought she did a pretty good job of trying to distribute the ball even though the 1,000 had to be in the back of her mind. It was a nice job.”
While Marian moves to 11-12, Glenn closes at 3-18 after a tough season in which the Falcons saw the death of longtime head coach Dan Hutton to pancreatic cancer.
“You have to appreciate the fact that they handled it at all,” said Willoughby. “We’ve had multiple instances where they were reminded. We had the start of the season, the day before the first game; we had a nice thing for Dan at a boys game and then we had Dan’s death and we had a pancreatic cancer day. Every one of those was a reminder of the fact that he wasn’t coaching. It was a difficult year, and I think they handled that part really well.”
• MISHAWAKA MARIAN 42,
JOHN GLENN 36
At Class 3A Rochester Sectional
Score by quarters
Glenn: 3 15 24 36
Marian: 10 19 29 42
GLENN (36): Carah Ochs 0 1-2 1, Jacy Borlik 9 4-5 23, Cayla Ochs 1 0-0 2, Katherine Dreessen 4 0-0 8, Dillynn Schleg 0 0-0 0, Sarah Traversa 0 0-0 0, Erin Patterson 1 0-0 2; Totals: 15 5-7 36.
MARIAN (42): Erin Guzicki 2 2-2 7, Katie Barnard 4 4-5 12, Gabby Veldman 1 2-2 4, Kathleen Kavanagh 7 0-0 15, Nicky DelPrete 2 0-3 4, Allison Ketcham 0 0-0 0, Jordan Stoler 0 0-0 0, Allyson Schmidt 0 0-0 0; Totals: 16 8-12 42.
3-point goals: Glenn 1 (Borlik), Marian 2 (Guzicki, Kavanagh); Total fouls (fouled out): Glenn 12 (none), Marian 13 (none); Turnovers: Glenn 20, Marian 20; Rebounds: Glenn 24 (Borlik 7), Marian 28 (Kavanagh 8).
Records: Glenn 3-18 (final), Marian 11-12.