Bucs offense stalls against Saints
It was a tale of two halves when the Blue Earth Area Buccaneers battled the St. Peter Saints in girl’s basketball on Tuesday, Feb. 12.
The game, played in St. Peter, featured the Bucs enjoying a stong first half as they took a 30-24 lead at the midway point of the game.
Unfortunately, the second half did not go so well for BEA. They were outscored by the Saints 29-19 in the closing stanza resulting in a 53-49 win for the Saints.
The statistics certainly tell a large part of the story. BEA made only 23.3 percent of their 2-point attempts in the game. Meanwhile, the Saints connected on 44 percent of their 2-point tries.
BEA actually did better shooting long range shots. The Bucs made eight of their 23 3-point attempts, a 34.8 percent success rate.
St. Peter made seven shots from behind the arc but five of them came in the second half and helped spark their comeback.
The Bucs got off to a quick start in the game. Caitlin Rorman hit an opening 3-pointer. After St. Peter made one of two free throws, Ta Armstrong found Alyssa Ripley for a short jumper and a 5-1 lead for the Bucs.
Rorman grabbed a rebound on the defensive end and took it all the way down the court for a lay up and a 7-1 Buccaneer lead.
The Saints pulled within two points at 7-5 but two free throws by Rorman put BEA in front 9-5. Armstrong’s steal led to a 3-pointer by Hannah Johnson to give the Bucs a 12 5 advantage.
St. Peter scored to make it 12-7. Johnson and Arika Howard each swished the nets from outside the arc and the Bucs now enjoyed an 18-7 lead.
BEA would take their largest lead of the evening with just under six minutes left in the first half when Rorman’s two shots from the charity stripe put the Bucs on top 25-12.
The Saints outscored the Bucs 12-5 during the final five minutes of the half making the half time score 30-24 in favor of the Bucs.
It only took four minutes into the closing stanza for St. Peter to forge a 33-33 tie. BEA regained the lead momentarily when Rorman made one of two free throw attempts.
With 9:55 remaining in the game, the Saints had taken a 40-34 lead. The Bucs had scored only four points during the first eight minutes of the final half.
BEA pulled within one point of the Saints with 2:12 showing on the clock and St. Peter leading 48-47.
The Bucs were forced to foul to get possession of the ball and the Saints made five of their six attempts at the free throw line to claim the 53-49 victory.
Rorman led the Bucs with 18 points, nine rebounds and four steals. Johnson added 14 points, eight rebounds and three steals. Armstrong finished with six points.
With the loss, the overall record for the Bucs is 11-9 and 3-6 in the Big South Conference.
The girls played host to St. James on Friday, Feb. 15. Results of that contest will be next week’s edition of the Faribault County Register.
BEA 61, Maple River 31
Blue Earth Area picked up an important section win with their 61-31 defeat of the Maple River Eagles in girl’s basketball last Saturday, Feb.9. The victory gave the Bucs a 4-3 record in the section.
Scoring was at a premium early in the contest with neither team having much success putting the ball through the hoop.
In fact, 10 minutes into the first half, the score was tied 5-5.
“Both teams struggled to score early” Buccaneer head coach Al Cue noted. “Thankfully, we finally got the lid off the bucket.”
Caitlin Rorman broke the tie with a traditional 3-point play. Next, she grabbed a defensive rebound and took it coast-to-coast for a layup and a 10-5 BEA lead.
The Eagles cut the lead to two points at 10-8 before Hannah Johnson ignited a 13-0 run with a basket from behind the arc.
A Ta Armstrong to Rorman back to Armstrong fast break gave the Bucs a 15-8 advantage.
Johnson ripped the nets with two more 3-pointers making the score 21-8 with the Bucs on top.
Armstrong hit Rorman with a nice pass in the paint and the senior forward put the ball in the hoop for a 23-8 Buccaneer lead at the half.
BEA was on top 27-15 when Armstrong found the range on two consecutive 3-pointers. Rorman then converted an offensive rebound into two more points and the Bucs were up by 20 points causing Maple River to call a time out with 13:23 left in the game.
The Eagles worked their deficit down to 14 points before Callie Stevermer’s drive down the lane put the brakes on an Eagle comeback. Stevermer’s basket gave the Bucs a 41-25 lead.
Following a Johnson putback basket, Arika Howard nailed a 3-pointer to increase the BEA lead to 46-25.
The Bucs would outscore the Eagles 15-6 over the final six minutes of the game to cement their 61-31 win.
BEA dominated the Eagles in every facet of the contest.
The Bucs made 47.1 percent of their shots from the field while holding the Eagles to just 18.9 percent shooting. Maple River really struggled with their 3-point shots, making only three of 22 attempts.
BEA held the rebounding edge by a 45-25 margin. The Bucs also made all six of their free throw attempts. Maple River made eight of their 13 attempts from the charity stripe.
Rorman achieved a double-double, leading the Bucs with 24 points and 14 rebounds.
Johnson pulled down eight rebounds in addition to scoring 13 points. Armstrong hit double figures with 11 points and led the team with five assists. Stevermer also collected eight rebounds in the winning effort.