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Tivy girls cruise during 86-35 drubbing of McCollum

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Posted: Friday, January 11, 2019 11:37 pm

Early in the first quarter, with the Tivy girls already enjoying an 11-point lead over McCollum, coach Christy Dill called a timeout.

During the last two days, the No. 4 Lady Antlers had been working on a new inbounds play. Dill wanted to refresh her players’ memories before debuting the play in a game.

Following the timeout, the inbounds play worked to perfection. Senior guard Katie Harmon curled off an off-ball screen from Peyton Ives and sliced to the basket. The inbounds passer, Julia Becker, zipped a laser to Harmon, who punctuated the new play with an uncontested layup. The Lady Antlers looked like they had been running that play for two years.

“It’s a nice little play to get some points on the board,” Harmon said.

The inbounds play had no bearing whatsoever on the outcome of Friday’s game, as the Lady Antlers waltzed to a 86-35 wire-to-wire victory over McCollum at Antler Gym. But it did capture the theme of Friday’s contest: The Lady Antlers made everything look easy while eviscerating McCollum.

Tivy (26-1, 10-0 District 26-5A) shot 53 percent from the floor and 42 percent from the 3-point line. Charli Becker dropped a game-high 21 points to go along with her six steals. Audrey Robertson and Ives each contributed 13 points. Catherine Kaiser added 11 points. Julia Becker chipped in six points`

Defensively, the Lady Antlers forced 23 steals, allowing them to cruise to their 20th straight victory. The most impressive part about their current winning streak? They have won each game by at least double digits.

“That’s pretty impressive, I guess,” said Harmon, who scored 10 points while connecting on all four of her field goal attempts. “I don’t really keep up with win streaks. I just show up and play.”

Harmon and her teammates accomplished just that on Friday. Basically, a Tivy victory was assured as soon as the Lady Antlers stepped onto the court for tipoff. (The Lady Antlers led 26-5 at the end of the first quarter). So Dill treated Friday’s game as a golden opportunity to experiment with different schemes. The Lady Antlers debuted a new zone defense, ran some different sets on offense, and of course, tried some new inbounds plays.

“We are trying to implement a couple of new things offensively and defensively … so that we have lots and lots of options in the playoffs,” Dill said. “Tonight was the first day we tried a couple of those new things, but the girls handled it well.

“I want to work on a lot of things, so that when we come across different situations in the playoffs, we have already been there, done that and I can just draw something up. And they can execute. They are a smart group who can quickly study new things. It’s been fun to coach to them.”

The Lady Antlers showed why on Friday, never lowering their intensity despite the lopsided scoredTivy’s starters opened the fourth quarter on a 16-3 run, extending their lead to 86-26. Robertson capped the run by forcing yet another steal and tossing a pass to Kaiser, who drained a 10-foot jumper with four minutes remaining in the fourth. That’s when Dill decided to bring in the subs.

As Tivy’s starters trotted toward the bench, Dill flashed a smile. Once again, the Lady Antlers had found a way to make the most out of playing against an overmatched opponent.

“Tonight, they fine tuned some things,” Dill said. “I am proud of them.”

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