CRESSON - The Bishop Carroll Catholic High School girls basketball team came into Saturday's key sectional matchup with Penn Cambria averaging 59.8 points per game during its five-game winning streak.
Saturday night, the Penn Cambria defense was the story, holding the Lady Huskies to just 33 points on their way to a 55-33 victory to improve to 3-0 in Laurel Highlands Athletic Conference Section 1 action.
"Offensively for them, we knew they liked to dribble drive, and so we went in a zone for the first quarter," Penn Cambria coach Rodger Fair said. "We weren't getting to loose balls and couldn't turn them over. We came out in the second quarter in man-to-man and I think that was the difference. The rest of the game we were able to turn them over, and they couldn't get into a rhythm. I think we defended the dribble-drive a lot better. We saw what they were scoring, so we knew they were capable. It starts with ball pressure, and if we can rebound misses, that's a pretty good combination."
Bishop Carroll (7-3, 1-1 LHAC Section 1) scored 10 points in the opening quarter, the only time the Huskies could muster double digits in a quarter. The Panthers' stifling defense forced 21 turnovers as BC couldn't get into a rhythm all night on the offensive end.
"We were real stagnant on the offensive end, that's what it really came down to," Bishop Carroll coach Crystal Horton said. "I think that's the thing that rings clear with Penn Cambria, they have too many bigs. They're big, they're strong, and they're quick. We normally have a pretty great offense, we just couldn't hit shots tonight. It was a cold night for us shooting wise."
Penn Cambria (9-3, 3-0 LHAC Section 1) led 15-10 after the first quarter, using a 10-2 run late to gain control of the game. BC led just once, 6-5, in the entire game.
The Lady Panthers outscored BC 16-8 in the second to lead 31-18 at the half. Senior Megan Wheeler scored all 10 of her points in the first half. Sophomore Kaley Strittmatter scored seven of her game-high 13 points in the quarter, hitting two mid-range jumpers.
"Once we had a double-digit lead, it just seemed like every time they looked like they were going to cut it, we would get some putbacks," Fair said. "I thought Kaley shot well in the second quarter."
Bishop Carroll senior Haley Krug made a layup midway through the third quarter to cut the lead to eight. However, that was as close as the Huskies got the rest of the night. Penn Cambria scored the next nine points to build their lead to 17.
"No shots were falling; we couldn't get to the free throw line," Horton said. "It just was a tough night for us offensively. I think if we had a couple of shots dropped for us it would have been a totally different ballgame. Kudos to them, I think they scouted us well, they knew who our shooters are. Our shooters just didn't knock down shots like they normally do."
Penn Cambria outscored the Huskies 9-7 and 15-8 in the last two quarters. The Panthers got balanced production across the board as leading scorer Kaitlyn Krug scored 10 points to join Wheeler and Strittmatter in double figures. Freshman Anna Audley scored eight, and senior Tori Shingler hit two 3-pointers for six points.
"When Krug went to the bench [with two fouls in the first half], always having another option always helps," Fair said about the balanced scoring. "I always preach to them feed the hot shooter, and we did that in the second quarter, especially with Kaley."
Bishop Carroll (33): B. Krug 3 0-3 6, Farabaugh 1 0-0 3, H. Krug 2 0-0 4, Mento 1 2-3 4, Link 3 2-2 8, Sammarco 2 2-5 6, Yahner 1 0-0 2, Chumrik 0 0-0 0, Gueguen 0 0-0 0. Totals: 13 6-13 33.
Penn Cambria (55): Strittmatter 6 1-2 13, Krug 3 3-4 10, Shingler 2 0-0 6, Wheeler 3 4-6 10, Vincent 1 2-5 4, Audley 2 4-4 8, Anderson 2 0-1 4, Little 0 0-0 0, Link 0 0-0 0, Williams 0 0-1 0, Yusko 0 0-0 0. Totals: 19 14-23 55.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Bishop Carroll10 8 7 8 - 33
Penn Cambria15 16 9 15 - 55
3-point field goals: Bishop Carroll 1 (Farabaugh); Penn Cambria 3 (Krug, Shingler 2).
Records: Bishop Carroll (7-3, 1-1 LHAC Section 1); Penn Cambria (9-3, 3-0 LHAC Section 1).
Officials: Denny Gramling, Roy Rolla, Pat Kirby.