On a night when their steadily improving offense produced at a level that should've been sufficient, Maryville's suddenly vulnerable defense let them down.
While topping 50 points for just the second time all year, the Lady Hounds allowed their second highest point total of the season in a 60-51 loss to East Buchanan Friday night at MHS Gymnasium.
The Bulldogs, who led throughout the second half, scored 48 points over the final three quarters and registered at least 12 in all four. That's with hitting only two three's and missing nine free throws.
Maryville kept pace with East Buchanan in the first and third quarters, but not in the second and fourth when it was outscored 33-24.
An 8-2 run by East Buchanan in the final 2:46 put the game away.
The Hounds fell to 5-13 overall, losing for the sixth straight time and third in a row at home.
Over the last three games, Maryville has given up an average of 62.7 points.
"Offensively, when you score 51 points you hope the way we've played defense up to this point that we'd be in the game," said Maryville head girls basketball coach Grant Hageman. "We were, but I think we worked so hard to get back in it, it was hard for us to keep fighting back at the end."
Maryville worked its way back from an 11-point third quarter deficit to get within three early in the fourth quarter on a putback by Chelsey McMichael.
Five empty possessions followed in which the Lady Hounds turned it over three times, missed two free throws and a short bank shot, all with a chance to get within three.
After Sidney Plackemeier's jumper with six minutes left, the Bulldogs kept at least a five-point lead the rest of the way.
An uncontested press-breaking layup by freshman Mariah Aebersold—her second straight field goal— and a driving left-handed bank shot from senior Chelsea Dewey made it 56-47 with under two minutes left.
Sophomore McKenna Holdsworth and Dewey scored East Buchanan's final four points at the foul line where they finished 16-25. Blair Twaddle scored right before the buzzer to increase Maryville's fourth quarter total to eight points, still their lowest of the game.
"In the fourth quarter, we had some mental mistakes," said Hageman. "One big mental mistake there at the end. You got to take care of the ball better. We had too many turnovers at the end of the game when we needed shots. Their defense really put a lot of pressure on us. That's still something we got to work on a little bit."
Dewey knifed her way through Maryville's defense to finish with a game-high 22 points. Constantly looking to attack either in the half-court or transition, Dewey also created a bevy of easy opportunities for her teammates.
Plackemeier (12 points) and Makayla Aebersold (10 points) joined Dewey in double-figures. Holdsworth just missed being the fourth Bulldog in that realm with nine points.
"I thought our girls had a heck of an effort trying to contain (Dewey)," said Hageman. "She makes that team go. She gets 20 points, but they still score 60. We got to do a better job of stopping those other girls. We have the ability to do that. We just didn't get it done tonight. Give them credit for knocking down some shots."
The Hounds also had three in double-figures and were led in scoring for the second straight game by junior guard Chelsea Byland with 14 points. She hit two three's and senior guard Blair Twaddle knocked down three to finish with 11 points.
McMichael had an active game inside, finishing with 10 points. Junior forward Gabby Church scored seven points and Baylee Scarbrough added five.
"I thought we got a lot of good looks, some of those you got to knock down," said Hageman. "You can't shoot well every single night, but some of the looks we were getting, you have to have those go in to win games like that. It was good execution by the girls. Sometimes they don't fall."
The Lady Hounds held multiple leads in the first half, but never got one above three points.
Two free throws from Byland and a jumper by McMichael gave Maryville a 12-9 lead towards the end of the first quarter. Shortly after, the Hounds were issued a technical foul for an improper scorebook entry, giving the Bulldogs a free point.
Dewey concluded the quarter with a difficult 18-point foot runner to tie it at 12.
East Buchanan extended to a four-point lead twice in a high-scoring second quarter, but the Hounds went back in front 21-20 on a Twaddle three and McMichael putback with 5:03 left.
Twaddle's second three of the quarter put the Hounds ahead 27-24.
The Bulldogs scored the next five points to create the final lead change of the game. They also scored the final four points of the quarter to lead 33-28 at the half.
Dewey and Holdsworth combined for eight of East Buch's final 11 second quarter points.
The two teams traded baskets to begin the second half before the Bulldogs surged ahead 44-33 behind a Dewey basket and two from Plackemeier.
Maryville closed the quarter on a 10-4 run that began with three's from Byland and Twaddle to make it 48-43.
The Lady Hounds got even closer at the start of the fourth before fading down the stretch.
Maryville concludes a four-game homestand tonight against Lathrop.
"We want to play hard, play together and make sure that we're playing as a team," said Hageman. "That's our focus right now. If we do that and the little things continue to get better, it will take care of itself."
By Joey Falkoff email@example.com
The Maryville Daily Forum - Maryville, MO
By Joey Falkoff firstname.lastname@example.org
Updated Jan. 27, 2013 @ 5:36 pm
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