If the Rock Bridge girls’ basketball players can keep their momentum, they’ll eclipse last year’s poor performance.
Undefeated, the Bruins extended their winning streak to six by beating California 45-27 Thursday night. It was Rock Bridge’s second home game of the season.
Rock Bridge has posted as many wins as it had last season when they finished 6-20. Coach Kevin Giese said he expects the team to win a few more games before the end of the season.
“Six is a good number for the fans,” Giese said. “It’s a good number for us, but it’s more for the fans than it is for us. We think we can continue this and keep going throughout the season.”
Turnovers proved to be the most important statistic of the game. Rock Bridge turned the ball over four times in the first quarter. At the end of the quarter the Bruins found themselves behind 8-12.
Momentum swung completely in Rock Bridge’s favor in the second half. The Bruins took better care of the ball and played better defense. The Bruins gave the ball away four times and forced 10 turnovers in the second half.
“I think those turnovers come from the score,” Giese said. “Early in the game we were behind and the pressure was on us. The second half they were behind and the pressure kept mounting and mounting for them.”
Inside play was a large part of the Rock Bridge offense. Sophomore forward Ashley Dressler led the Bruins’ scoring with 12 points, most of which were in the paint.
“When it’s open they just pass it in because we call for the ball,” Dressler said. “They’re pretty good at getting it inside and we’re pretty good at finishing.”
Pounding the ball inside to get easy baskets wasn’t the only reason Rock Bridge focused on playing half-court offense. Senior Rachel Jones said controlling the pace of the game helped the Bruins secure the win.
“I think that had been our motto tonight,” Jones said. “Slow it down, slow it down. There’s no need to rush. We have 40 minutes in a ball game, no need to make it go any faster than that.”
Giese said he expects the rest of Rock Bridge’s opponents to be just about the same caliber as California.
“They’re a very good team,” Giese said. “They have two really standout players. And sometimes when you have standout players like that some of the other players aren’t used to having as much of a load on their shoulders. But they’re as good as any other team on our schedule.”