Elizabeth Forward girls easily beat Brownsville
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Elizabeth Forward girls basketball coach Sam Kosanovich is getting all too used to his team wiping out an opponent.
The Lady Warriors have done so in nearly each of their nine wins this season, including Thursday's Section 4-AAA 64-21 victory over Brownsville.
Even so, Kosanovich refuses to expect anything less than perfection from his players no matter who they are playing, and it shows.
Elizabeth Forward rolled to a 25-8 first-quarter lead with a stifling press defense that resulted in Brownsville attempting only three shots during the first eight minutes and turning the ball over 15 times.
The Lady Warriors won their sixth consecutive game and took sole possession of first place in the section.
“I don't care who we are playing or however you view your opponent, we have a reason to play,” Kosanovich said. “We want to execute offensively and defensively and take every game seriously — every game. We want to get something out of every game.”
Kosanovich has been getting his wish.
The Lady Warriors (9-1, 2-0) are beating their opponents by an average of 25 points. Elizabeth Forward's closest game against a team from Pennsylvania — it played three games at the KSA Classic in Orlando, Fla. — has been 14 against Thomas Jefferson two weeks ago.
“It isn't something where you want to show off,” Kosanovich said. “It has nothing to do with that. It has something to do with getting better offensively and defensively. That's our goal with every practice, with every game.”
Elizabeth Forward got 14 points and 10 rebounds from Natalie Fekula off the bench, Dana Buck added 13 and Alison Pastore chipped in 12 despite playing less than a half and the majority of the game with a running clock.
In all, 11 Lady Warriors scored and 13 played — a key to what Kosanovich said keeps his team motivated, especially against lesser teams.
“If you don't want to get out on the floor and do the job, we have people who we can put in there that can do the job,” Kosanovich said. “If you aren't doing the job or if you aren't doing it right, somebody will do it better. That's the great thing about 10-12 people to rely on. That's the great thing about competition.”
Leading by 17 heading into the second quarter, Elizabeth Forward kept up its defensive intensity, resulting in 1-of-12 shooting by the Lady Falcons and another eight turnovers.
By halftime, the Lady Warriors led, 41-10.
Whitney Ptak paced Brownsville (3-6, 0-3) with nine points.
“We like to win with our defense,” Kosanovich said. “With our guards, we want to press as much as we can.”
Elizabeth Forward forced 38 turnovers.
The Lady Warriors likely have another easy game coming up Saturday against Waynesburg (2-7) before playing two of the top teams in the section back-to-back in rivals Ringgold and Belle Vernon.
Kosanovich isn't worried about getting up for those games.
“The rivalry of other teams, you get up for those games automatically,” Kosanovich said. “I am not worried about that. What I worry about is how we perform with what we want to do.”
Mark Kaboly is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or @MarkKaboly_Trib.
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