MECHANICSBURG – The Indians cranked up the defensive pressure and stifled Benjamin Logan on Monday, winning a non-conference girls basketball game by a 39-24 margin.
Both teams were scoreless deep into the first quarter, when the Raiders finally drew first blood six minutes into the game.
“We’re coming off a big win and then the next day on Sunday we worked all day up here (at youth basketball). So our shooting was off. But I think we made up for it with a great defensive effort,” Mechanicsburg Coach Christie Dodane said. “I think we’re mentally drained. I attribute the slow start and the lack of scoring to that.”
The home team went on a 15-0 run – eight in a row to end the opening quarter and seven to begin the second – and took a commanding lead into the locker room at 22-8.
The Raiders (7-7) continued to turn the ball over against immense pressure after the intermission, with the Indians (8-5) seemingly at times playing with seven or eight players on defense.
“We wanted to put a lot of pressure on them, and the girls did a great job doing that,” Dodane said. “If they got by one, we had help side and other girls stepping in. I was very pleased with our defensive effort.”
The pressure was so great that in the fourth quarter, Mechanicsburg’s Lani Wilhelm took a swinging elbow to the face and broke her nose. The crack was audible across the gymnasium.
After the blood was cleaned up, the Indians continued to play a clock-milking motion offense and let up slightly defensively, but still allowed very few easy looks.
Grace Forrest led the scoring with 14 points as the primary ball handler for Mechanicsburg.
“I’m pleased with Grace’s progress. I’m impressed with how much she improved this summer. She just stepped into that role. She’s doing a nice job leading these guys,” Dodane said.
In the jayvee game, Benjamin Logan won, 27-24. Elyse Wilson scored 11 points in that contest for Mechanicsburg.
The Indians host Catholic Central on Thursday.
Reach Justin Miller at 652-1331 (ext. 1776) or on Twitter @UDC_Miller.