Thursday, July 31, 2014

Defense propels Lady Braves to win

By Greg Mast/Herald Sports Editor | 11/29/2013

The Ottawa University women’s basketball team has been getting after it defensively the past few games.

Ottawa held teams to under 60 points the past three games and two of those were victories.

The Ottawa University women’s basketball team has been getting after it defensively the past few games.

Ottawa held teams to under 60 points the past three games and two of those were victories.

The Lady Braves rolled past Avila, 66-52, Tuesday, in Wilson Field House.

“Very pleased with the way we came out defensively,” Ottawa coach Bruce Tate said. “Our goal is to hold teams under 60. The last three games we have been in the 50s defensively.

“With the rule changes and the hand-checking, the girls have totally bought in to our defensive philosophy this year. If we can continue to do that, it is going to help us. Offensively, you never know how you are going to show up.”

Ottawa found the range from the outside, hitting 11 of 22 treys.

“That is something we have not been doing all year,” Tate said. “In practice, we have not allowed them to shoot threes. Points in the paint will open up those three-point shots. It really worked.”

Ottawa led 30-22 at halftime after rallying from a 9-2 deficit. Ottawa hit four treys in the first five minutes of the second half to extend the lead to 46-29.

“The first two minutes is what we want to control,” Tate said. “We were able to do that. We came out attacking the rim. At the beginning of the game, we were shellshocked. We expected them to play a lot of zone. We did not work on our man-to-man stuff. It took us awhile to get things going offensively.”

Tate said Avila does a good job of packing the paint.

“We had to knock those shots down tonight to be successful,” he said.

Shauna McClure led Ottawa with 17 points as she hit five treys. Amber Ramsey finished with 14 points, 12 rebound, three assists and two blocked shots.

Tate said Ramsey has taken her game to another level this season.

Madison Stewart added 11.

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