In the first half of last night's non-league girls' basketball match-up, Jim Thorpe utilized an impressive full-court press to eventually wear down visiting Weatherly en route to a 56-34 win.
"That's our identity with the press," Jim Thorpe head coach Rob Kovac mentioned. "With Celeste (Robinson) there at the point of that press, she's pretty tough. But it's the other girls that have a huge part of the press working in (Nina) Batts, (Kristin) Lawrence and (Jeanna) McElmoyle. A lot of havoc is created by those three."
The pressure eventually did lead to the downfall of the Lady Wreckers, who are heavily-laden with guards throughout their line-up. In the first half, it caused 19 turnovers, which eventually led to easy points for the Lady Olympians.
In the first quarter, Jim Thorpe raced out to a 10-2 lead, only to see Weatherly storm back to trail 10-9. However, the Jim Thorpe press went to work again and gave way to another run, as the Lady Olympians closed out the quarter with a 9-0 spree.
Robinson had 10 in the opening quarter, with teammate Chelsea Smelas adding four.
The second quarter started in the same manner, as Jim Thorpe outscored Weaterly 13-4. Robinson continued to pour in the point production, as she downed eight more, helping her team to a 32-13 halftime lead.
"Nearly all of their points, probably 20 or so of them, came off of those turnovers from the press," Weatherly head coach Paul Hadzick admitted. "The pressure they applied was good and we panicked. When things got bad for us, we lost our composure."
In the second half, things calmed down as Kovac turned off the press, allowing the Wreckers to regain their offensive flow, leading to some nice buckets.
"We have some really aggressive, scrappy type of players and that helps," Hadzick mentioned. "But we still have a lot to work on in terms of fundamentals because we're going to see more pressure like this as the year goes on."
In the third frame, Jim Thorpe ballooned its lead to 44-18, as a lid was on the bucket for the first three and a half minutes of the second half for the Lady Wreckers.
Brittany Holland and Robinson both scored four in the session.
In the fourth, subs started to roll in and the Wreckers made things respectable, outscoring the hosts, 16-12.
Tracy Galada scored seven of her 10 points for Weatherly in the quarter, while teammate Alicia Panzarella added five in the fourth.
"It's nice to be 3-0," Kovac admitted. "A year ago, we started out 0-5, so it's nice. We are stressing to them to enjoy this moment, but at the same time, we realize that we have to get better."
For the game, Robinson led all scorers with 24 points, while Holland and Smelas added 10 apiece.
For Weatherly (1-1), Panzarella led the way with 14.
In the JV contest, Weatherly prevented the sweep with a 42-28 preliminary win, as Sara Heister scored 16. Jim Thorpe got nine apiece from Chelsea Robinson and Alex Ventrella.
J. Dougherty 1-0-0-2, Bizarre 0-0-0-0, E. Dougherty 0-0-0-0, Hinkle 1-0-0-2, Adamczyk 1-0-0-2, Panzarella 5-1-1-14, Heister 2-0-0-4, Hanson 0-0-0-0, Boyarski 0-0-0-0, Galada 4-1-1-10. TOTALS: 14-2-2-34.
McElmoyle 0-0-0-0, Batts 1-0-0-2, Lawrence 2-0-0-6, Condly 0-0-0-0, Rusbarsky 0-0-0-0, Holland 4-2-4-10, Robinson 11-2-2-24, Mosteller 1-0-0-2, Ventrella 1-0-0-2, Smelas 5-0-3-10. TOTALS: 25-4-9-56.
Weatherly 9 4 5 16 - 34
Jim Thorpe 19 13 12 12 - 56
Three pointers: W - Panzarella 3, Galada 1; JT - Lawrence 2.