'Fantastic plays' lead to Lady Tanagers win by Jim Prosser The Vermillion varsity Tanagers pulled away in the second half to top the Harrisburg Tigers 53-39 in girls' basketball Dec. 11 at Vermillion.
Vermillion had led by only six in the third period.
The season-opening win gave Vermillion a record of 1-0 while Harrisburg fell to 0-1.
"Our girls really played hard tonight," said Vermillion coach Jamie Parish. "There were times when we made typical first game mistakes, but our effort was there from start to finish. Defensively, Annie Roche and Jackie Thomas had the task of trying to slow down Harrisburg's Molly Hayes. The two kids did a great job of making her earn her looks at the basket and our other defenders really did a nice job of stepping in to help out on her dribble penetration.
"Once the shot was up, we also showed some improvement in our rebounding from last year. We had an occassional missed box out, but overall, the coaching staff was pleased with the effort being our first game," he said.
The Tanagers led 15-10 at the end of the first period, led 25-19 at halftime, and then led 40-31 after the third period.
Vermillion made 4 of 18 three-pointers and sank 11 of 18 free throw attempts. The Tanagers hit 19 of 51 from the field, while Harrisburg was 12 of 34 from the field. Harrisburg sank 1 of 8 three-point attempts and made 11 of 22 from the line.
Vermillion held a 40-20 edge on the boards.
Several significant individual efforts contributed to the win.
"Offensively, we tried to push the ball more often than we have in the past," coach Parish said. "It made for some fantastic plays; our rebounders are doing a much better job of chinning the ball and throwing outlets to our perimeter players so we can hurry down in transition. Offensively, our team will need to be balanced to see success this year and we started out on good note with Jackie Thomas having 16, Annie Carlson 14, and Annie Roche 12. "Defensively, Kayla Mollet led us with 10 boards; Annie Carlson and Michelle Olson were close behind with nine and seven respectively. Although it doesn't show up on the stat sheet, Melissa Olson did a fine job of helping on defense and running the floor hard in transition. As we continue to play together and grow, our wing players are going to see her beat her defender down the floor for some easy looks," he said.
Individual Stats, Vermillion: Scoring � Jackie Thomas, 16, Annie Roche, 14, Annie Carlson, 12, Melissa Olson, 5, Michelle Olson, 4, Kayla Mollet, 2. Rebounds � Mollet, 10, Carlson, 9. Assists � Thomas, 5. Steals � Thomas, 4
Individual Stats, Harrisburg: Scoring � Molly Hayes, 17, Stacy VanEkeren, 8, Chastin Aleck, 6, Kari Solko, 3, Jenni Poppinga, 3, Ashley DeMent, 2. Rebounds � Hayes, 7, Solko, 6. Assists � Aleck, 3. Steals � Van Eckeren, 2.
Team fouls � Vermillion-18, Harrisburg � 15.