Sacred Heart dominates Ethel, 49-22

By ANDREW ABADIE,

Sacred Heart continued its historic postseason run with a 49-22 win over Ethel in the second round of the Class 1A playoffs. 

 

Sacred Heart’s speed and ability to score on the fast break, as well as a strong defensive outing, helped put the Tigers away quickly. 

 

“I thought defensively our pressure gave them a lot of problems,” Sacred Heart coach Matt O’Keefe said. “They are a half-court team. They like to shoot the three a lot and are real methodic in their offense. We wanted to speed them up and get them to push the ball on the floor. I don’t know many turnovers we had tonight, but I think we turned them over a lot, and that was the key getting in an up-tempo game.”

 

However, Sacred Heart found itself down 9-5 early to start the first quarter. 

 

“We weren’t rotating correctly out of our pressure we were in,” O’Keefe said. “We were in another press and we had the kids a little confused. Had to make just a small adjustment, but I thought that when we went to our 1-2-1-1 (defense) hurt them more than our 1-2-2 (defense) did.” 

 

After the adjustment, the Crusaders had full control for the rest of the first half as the Crusaders ended the first quarter on a 13-0 run and then outscored Ethel 12-0 in the second quarter to take a 30-9 lead at halftime. 

 

At the helm for Sacred Heart was Gracie Falla, who came up with multiple steals and blocks by pushing the tempo. Falla led the team with 15 points.

 

“(Falla) is our catalyst and everybody knows that,” O’Keefe said. “She has to score, play defense, rebound, bring the ball out and technically she does a lot for us. But she kind of gets us going. She spearheads our offense and defense.” 

 

Falla helping push the tempo tired out the taller Ethel team, which helped Kate Gallardo with mismatches inside the paint. Gallardo came down with numerous rebounds and scored 12 points. Falla also created openings for Mary Gilbertson, who made four 3-points to score 12 points on the night.  

 

“They are bigger than us inside, and I thought tonight we did a pretty good job on the boards, especially with Hannah Mercier and Kate Gallardo because they were outmatched inside, but I was real pleased,” O’Keefe said. 

 

Despite the win, O’Keefe still had concerns for his team’s decisions with the ball.

 

“(Ethel was) averaging 10-12 3-pointers a game,” O’Keefe said. “I thought we really did a good job with perimeter on them, but we wanted to get them up and down on the floor. I thought maybe we tried to push it a little too much and we made some bad decisions passing the basketball, but overall the kids followed the game plan real well.”

 

Sacred Heart will play Shaw on Thursday at Pearl River Community College with tipoff set for 5:30 p.m. 

 

“From now on, it doesn’t get any easier,” O’Keefe said. “We’re ecstatic to be in the third round because this group of kids overachieved all year. They are gritty and play hard.” 

 

Sacred Heart 49, Ethel 22

At Sacred Heart – Round 2 1A Playoffs

Sacred Heart (16-11) – Mallory Gilbertson 4 0-1 12, Sarah Gallardo 1 3-5 5, Gabby Falla 1 0-0 2, Ella Mercier 2 0-0 4, Gracie Falla 5 3-3 15, Kate Gallardo 6 0-1 12. Field Goals: 21, Free Throws: 6-10, Total Points: 49. 

Ethel (13-15) – Brooke Mitchell 0 0-0 0, Stavianne Cain 0 0-0 0, Jasmine Johnson 1 0-0 2, Zakiya Dotson 3 0-0 6, Jaterika Merritt 0 0-0 0, Takia Miller 1 0-0 3, Destiny Felton 3 0-0 7, Chloe Cloninger 1 0-0 2. Field Goals: 9, Free Throws: 0-0, Total Points 22. 

SH     18    12    13    6    -    49

ET    9    0   4    9    -   22

3 – Pointers – SH 4 (Gilbertson 4), ET 2 (Miller, Felton). Total Fouls – SH 10, ET 14. Fouled Out: None.

Sacred Heart continues its historic postseason run with a 49-22 win over Ethel in the second round of the Class 1A playoffs.

Sacred Heart’s speed and ability to score on the fast break, as well as a strong defensive outing, helped put the Tigers away quickly.

“I thought defensively our pressure gave them a lot of problems,” Sacred Heart coach Matt O’Keefe said. “They are a half-court team. They like to shoot the three a lot and are real methodic in their offense. We wanted to speed them up and get them to push the ball on the floor. I don’t know many turnovers we had tonight, but I think we turned them over a lot, and that was the key getting in an up-tempo game.”

However, Sacred Heart found itself down 9-5 early to start the first quarter.

“We weren’t rotating correctly out of our pressure we were in,” O’Keefe said. “We were in another press and we had the kids a little confused. Had to make just a small adjustment, but I thought that when we went to our 1-2-1-1 (defense) hurt them more than our 1-2-2 (defense) did.”

After the adjustment, the Crusaders had full control for the rest of the first half as the Crusaders ended the first quarter on a 13-0 run and then outscored Ethel 12-0 in the second quarter to take a 30-9 lead at halftime.

At the helm for Sacred Heart was Gracie Falla, who came up with multiple steals and blocks by pushing the tempo. Falla led the team with 15 points.

“(Falla) is our catalyst and everybody knows that,” O’Keefe said. “She has to score, play defense, rebound, bring the ball out and technically she does a lot for us. But she kind of gets us going. She spearheads our offense and defense.”

Falla helping push the tempo tired out the taller Ethel team, which helped Kate Gallardo with mismatches inside the paint. Gallardo came down with numerous rebounds and scored 12 points. Falla also created openings for Mary Gilbertson, who made four 3-points to score 12 points on the night. 

“They are bigger than us inside, and I thought tonight we did a pretty good job on the boards, especially with Hannah Mercier and Kate Gallardo because they were outmatched inside, but I was real pleased,” O’Keefe said.

Despite the win, O’Keefe still had concerns for his team’s decisions with the ball.

“(Ethel was) averaging 10-12 3-pointers a game,” O’Keefe said. “I thought we really did a good job with perimeter on them, but we wanted to get them up and down on the floor. I thought maybe we tried to push it a little too much and we made some bad decisions passing the basketball, but overall the kids followed the game plan real well.”

Sacred Heart will play Shaw on Thursday at Pearl River Community College with tipoff set for 5:30 p.m.

“From now on, it doesn’t get any easier,” O’Keefe said. “We’re ecstatic to be in the third round because this group of kids overachieved all year. They are gritty and play hard.”

Sacred Heart 49, Ethel 22

At Sacred Heart – Round 2 1A Playoffs

Sacred Heart (16-11) – Mallory Gilbertson 4 0-1 12, Sarah Gallardo 1 3-5 5, Gabby Falla 1 0-0 2, Ella Mercier 2 0-0 4, Gracie Falla 5 3-3 15, Kate Gallardo 6 0-1 12. Field Goals: 21, Free Throws: 6-10, Total Points: 49.

Ethel (13-15) – Brooke Mitchell 0 0-0 0, Stavianne Cain 0 0-0 0, Jasmine Johnson 1 0-0 2, Zakiya Dotson 3 0-0 6, Jaterika Merritt 0 0-0 0, Takia Miller 1 0-0 3, Destiny Felton 3 0-0 7, Chloe Cloninger 1 0-0 2. Field Goals: 9, Free Throws: 0-0, Total Points 22.

SH     18    12     13    6    -    49

ET    9    0    4    9    -    22

3 – Pointers – SH 4 (Gilbertson 4), ET 2 (Miller, Felton). Total Fouls – SH 10, ET 14. Fouled Out: None.