Tigers’ size is too much for Salisbury
The Salisbury girls basketball team is going to give up some size in most of its games. That’s no surprise to head coach Dan Reichenbach and his team.
But the Falcons faced one of their most difficult tasks in that regard last Friday night against Northwestern.
Northwestern’s duo of senior Sage Christopher and sophomore Emily Sekerak gave Salisbury problems all night. The two combined for 22 points, including a game-high 15 from Christopher, as the Tigers defeated the Falcons 63-22.
Northwestern (11-1 overall; 6-1 in Colonial League) is the first local team to qualify for the district tournament.
“All I have to say is that we know we are going to be undersized against most teams, but the biggest problem we have to solve is learning to compete,” Reichenbach said. “That’s why we are playing man-to-man defense only now.”
Christopher and Sekerak wasted no time in Northwestern’s offensive explosion in the first half. The two scored half of the Tigers’ points to lead 28-7 after just eight minutes.
And it wasn’t just Northwestern’s size that gave Salisbury issues. Its defensive full-court pressure also played a huge role in that 20-point first-quarter advantage. The Falcons committed 13 turnovers in the first eight minutes alone.
Alexandra Lister found Christopher with an inbound pass for a three-point play that put Northwestern in front 17-3 early. Christopher then scored on a nice up-and-under move on the next possession to increase the Tigers’ lead to 19-3.
A three-pointer from Sydney Sevrain, who finished with 12 points, put the final stamp for Northwestern in the first quarter with 30 seconds to play.
Six different Tigers scored in the second quarter to take a 46-12 lead into halftime. The Tigers opened the frame with a 10-0 run before Quinn Wittman got Salisbury on the scoreboard with a three-pointer from the left wing.
Wittman finished with 12 points for the Falcons, more than half of the team’s scoring.
“They have to learn to look at the girl they are guarding and decide that they are not going to let that girl beat them,” Reichenbach said. “If my girl is going to score, she is going to have to earn it. Until that time, we will have a hard time winning.”
With Northwestern head coach Chris Deutsch emptying his bench midway through the third quarter with a 51-12 lead, the Tigers outscored Salisbury in the frame 11-3. Melena Koutch recorded the Falcons’ only field goal as Salisbury shot 1-for-8 in the quarter.
Sekerak scored seven points and pulled down eight rebounds. Christopher finished with six steals to go with her 15 points for Northwestern.
Salisbury (1-6, 1-10) returns to action on Thursday at Bangor. Game time is set for 6:45 p.m. at Salisbury High School. Northwestern will host Palisades on the same night.