That was the winning formula last night for Marian, as the Fillies calculated a 46-27 Schuylkill League Division III victory over Shenandoah Valley (3-2, 1-1).
The win improves Marian to 4-1 on the season, but more importantly, puts the Fillies all alone atop Division II with a full game lead (2-0) over both Shenandoah (1-1) and Nativity (1-1).
"It was a really big win for us tonight because it puts us a game up on our two closest rivals (Shenandoah and Nativity)," stated Marian head coach Paul Brutto. "We got more of what we wanted in the first half with an up-tempo style that caused some havoc, but overall, I'm pleased with the results. Twenty-seven turnovers is a good night's work against a pretty good team."
Crunching the numbers, the Fillies limited the Lady Devils to 27 points on only 27 shot attempts, while forcing 27 turnovers.
"For us this year, that is definitely a winning formula," added Brutto. "We need to cause some havoc and get some turnovers to score points, because when we don't, we seem to have a hard time putting the ball in the basket. It's not an easy style of basketball to play, but it's just one of those things that we need to do to win."
Marian seemed to have no trouble putting the ball in the basket in the opening minutes, as the Fillies converted four of their first eight shot attempts from the field to take a 13-5 lead with 1:44 remaining in the first quarter. Three of those field goals were of the three-point variety (two by Gabby Green and one by Lindsay Nemeth).
Shenandoah Valley would go on a 7-0 run over the next two minutes to trim the deficit to 13-12, but Marian answered right back with an 11-1 run of its own to increase the lead to 24-13. Eight of those 11 points came from Green, who added two more treys to her résumé.
On the night, Green scored 16 of her 20 points in the first half, including four three-pointers.
"First of all, that was an excellent shooting performance by Gabby, who's really worked hard and focused on her shooting this year," said Brutto. "Every time they would make a run, she seemed to hit a three, which really helped break down their zone defense."
Marian forced 10 of Shenandoah's 27 turnovers in the second quarter, en route to a 27-16 halftime advantage. The Fillies then held a double-digit lead for the remainder of the game.
Complementing Green's 20-point night was Samantha Faust, who tallied eight points and nine rebounds for Marian.
Ahna Huss paced Shenandoah Valley with seven points.
Marian shot 15-for-43 from the field, while the Lady Devils converted just eight of their 27 attempts. Shenandoah also outrebounded Marian 31-25, while the Fillies committed 12 turnovers.
In the JV game, Marian pulled out a 26-22 victory.
Nieddu 1-3-6-5, Dove 0-0-0-0, Hammer 1-1-2-3, Semanchick 2-1-3-5, Huss 3-1-3-7, Snitzer 1-2-2-5, Sacco 0-2-4-2. TOTALS: 8-10-20-27.
Green 8-0-0-20, Faust 3-2-4-8, Fannick 0-3-4-3, Bray 0-0-0-0, Sofranko 1-4-4-6, Shaud 0-0-0-0, Nemeth 2-1-2-6, Krusinsky 1-1-2-3, Hill 0-0-0-0, Holman 0-0-0-0. TOTALS: 15-11-16-46.
Shena. Vy. 7 9 4 7 - 27
Marian 13 14 8 11 - 46
Three-Pointers: Shenandoah Valley - Snitzer 1; Marian - Green 4, Nemeth 1.