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01-13-04: Rangers downed by Tigers


JACKSON CENTER — It’s hard to win a game when you shoot just 25 percent from the field, and the New Knoxville Lady hoopsters found that out firsthand last night at Jackson Center in their 49-38 loss to the Tigers.
The Rangers came close, though, as the Tigers were equally poor in connecting on just over 30 percent of their shots.
Ironically, each squad had 55 attempts, with Jackson Center hitting 17 and New Knoxville 14. That basically meant the game came down to rebounding and free-throw shooting, both of which Jackson Center won easily.
The Tigers outboarded the Rangers 41-27, with 18 offensive rebounds.
Jackson Center’s Kristi Platfoot spearheaded that rebounding attack with 16 boards, six of which were on the offensive side of the floor.
“They outboarded us bad, it got very physical and their 5-foot-9 and matching up with us at 5-foot-4,” said New Knoxville coach Dwain Meckstroth. “Across the board we were giving up four inches. We couldn’t play them in a man and they hit just enough shots in the zone to keep us at bay.”
Jackson Center was also able to make only 13-of-21 from the foul line compared to six-of-eight for the Rangers. The seven-point difference was obviously big in a nine-point game.
Early on it looked extremely bleak for the Rangers, as they hit just one of their first 10 shots to fall behind, 12-2.
They battled back, though, and a Kara Katterheinrich three-pointer cut the deficit to 14-10 after a quarter of action. The Rangers went into the half trailing, 23-15.
New Knoxville cut the lead to five with 5:55 remaining in the third quarter on a Kendal Bertsch three-pointer, but Jackson Center quickly ran its lead back up to 10.
The Rangers got close a number of times, but were never consistent enough offensively to make a big run.
“We weren’t patient enough to run our offense, we got out of whack and that’s part of being young, they tried to do it on their own and that happens,” MeckStroth said.
Going one-on-one wasn’t going to work last night, as Jackson Center’s man-to-man defense proved difficult to crack. Whenever New Knoxville did get a good look inside, the bunny shots didn’t fall.
“We’re not a great offensive team, if we’re going to win, then we have to stop people,” said Jackson Center coach Gregg Gooding. “We work on defense 50 percent of practice every night, and our key is straight up in your face man-to-man.
“They have great three-point shooters, and for the most part I think we were in their face, but when we lost them they hit a couple. You can’t let them get on a role,” Gooding added.
New Knoxville hit four-of-11 from downtown, the last of which was a buzzer beating three-pointer by Kara Katterheinrich to end the third quarter and put the Rangers behind seven points heading into the fourth.
The Rangers cut the lead to six when Nicole Wright scored four straight points early in the third, and then cut it to six one more time when Bertsch scored on an offensive rebound with 1:04 remaining.
New Knoxville then tried to foul to get back in the game, but the Tigers did a good job of getting the ball to the right person. Catie Halberstadt was that individual, and she hit 10-of-12 free throws in the game, including six-of-six in the final minute.
Halberstadt finished with 17 points to lead all scorers, while adding eight rebounds.
Katterheinrich and Bertsch both scored 10 for New Knoxville while Bertsch added seven rebounds. Wright finished with seven points and seven rebounds for the Rangers.
“Kara didn’t get as many looks, they pressured her and we went inside where it was open, and they just didn’t go in,” Meckstroth said. “It’ll get better, you have to remember he had two or three seniors on the floor and I have none. The juniors have to come around, we’re in the back half of the season. Tonight was their first taste, you go to work or this is how it’s going to be, I hope they learned a lesson tonight.”
New Knoxville returns to action Thursday at Minster.


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