Slow start dooms Lady Greyhounds
INDIANA - Major Corley thought he had seen it all in his 16 years as the Monessen Lady Greyhounds' coach.
He was wrong.
Wednesday, the Lady Greyhounds (25-5) went scoreless in the opening quarter for the first time in the PIAA Western Region final against District 6 champion Bishop Carroll (26-6) at Indiana University.
The result was an inevitable 62-34 spanking.
"Bishop Carroll was as good as the point spread," said Corley. "Now I know why they beat Clairton so bad."
He was referring to the Huskies' 64-30 rout over the WPIAL champs Saturday.
"They're fast and shoot well," added Corley.
Shooting well, meanwhile, was something Monessen didn't do.
The Lady Greyhounds missed all 14 of their shots in the first period and were zero for 15 before Charel Allen drove in for a score with 59 seconds gone in the second quarter.
By that time, the District 6 champions had built up a 19-0 lead and ended any hopes the Lady Greyhounds had of playing in Hershey Saturday for the first time in history.
"Our girls were hurrying their shots," said Corley. "They were more worried about getting their shots blocked.
"They were double teaming Charel and the problem was she couldn't see over their guards. We needed someone to put the ball in the basket and no one did."
Nychole Whitlock, Monessen's second leading scorer, missed all of her 10 first half shot and finished two of 13 from the floor with a three-pointer and basket in the final five minutes.
With only 6-2 junior Sarah Bradley averaging in double figures, defense was Bishop Carroll's ticket to Hershey.
"Our defensive play is awesome right now," said Huskies' coach Bob Gongloff. "We did an excellent job on Allen. We tried to trap her every chance we got and used two defenders on her when we could."
Despite making only one of eight shots in the first half, Allen finished with a game-high 21 points.
She scored 10 points in the third quarter and ended up going five of 12 from the floor in the second half and nine of 10 at the foul line.
Allen, who finished the game limping after hurting her knee following a collision with a Bishop Carroll player late in the third quarter, was impressed with the Huskies.
"They're a well rounded team and are extremely good," she said. "They'll win the state."
"I don't expect them to lose in Hershey," he said.
LEFTOVERS: Jaclyn Schirf, Bishop Carroll's lone senior starter, topped the Huskies with 16 points. Bradley finished with 15 points, one over her average. Bradley had 11 points and Schirf 10 in the first half to outscore the Lady Greyhounds, who trailed 34-8 at intermission. Schirf made three of the team's seven three-pointers. Monessen went two of 27 from the floor in the first half and finished 10 of 55. Bishop Carroll made 24 of 59 shots including 13 of 27 in the opening 16 minutes. Allen had 11 rebounds, eight steals and four blocks. Cassandra Tyree had nine rebounds for Monessen before fouling out in the opening minute of the fourth quarter. Monessen had 21 turnovers and was outrebounded 41-32. Nine players scored for Bishop Carroll which used 15 players. Bishop Carroll will play Pottsville Nativity BVM, a 52-37 winner over Marian Catholic, in Saturday's 1 p.m. title game at Hershey.