Perry takes control to safeguard win
Perry used a 13-5 run at the end of the first half to take a 33-24 lead into the locker room at Wooster on Monday, then held off a couple of second-half challenges before emerging with a 64-47 girls basketball victory.
IndeOnline.com sports writer
Posted Jan. 6, 2015 @ 12:21 am
Veteran girls basketball coach Jeff Couto sees what his Perry Panthers are capable of when he watches them every day in practice.
The Panthers are now taking those practice efforts and transferring them to the court more consistently.
Perry used a 13-5 run at the end of the first half to take a 33-24 lead into the locker room at Wooster on Monday. The Panthers then held off a couple of second-half challenges from the Generals before eventually emerging with a 64-47 girls basketball victory.
The win moved the Panthers to 5-7 this winter, while Wooster fell to 5-6.
“We’ve played a tough schedule to date, and it has come together maybe a little more slowly than we anticipated this season,” said Couto, who is in his first season guiding the Panthers after enjoying a long run of success at Louisville previously. “The key, though, is it’s coming together. The girls are hungry, they have a desire to take their game to the next level and games like tonight help us move in that direction.”
Perry’s youth was served in the form of sophomores Kimmie Borck and Karlee Pireu, who combined to nearly match the Generals’ offensive output with 45 points. Borck’s 23 points led all scorers, while Pireu added 22 points and pulled down a game-high 15 rebounds. Pireu had five field goals in the final five minutes of the second quarter to help the Panthers erase Wooster’s last lead of 17-15.
Brittany Miner added 12 points for Perry, which was coming off a win over Manchester last Friday.
“That happened tonight, but on other nights Jessie Morosko has stepped up. She had 21 the other night,” Couto said. “Brittany Miner came up with 12 points tonight and Kelsey Cobb has had some big games for us. What these girls understand is that on any given night, whether it’s sophomores, juniors or seniors, everyone is capable of stepping up.”
Borck’s driving laying put Perry up by double digits early in the second half, but Wooster responded with two straight layins from Ny Brown to slice its deficit to 35-28. The Panthers responded after a timeout by outscoring the Generals 7-3 to push their lead back to 42-31. Pireu, Borck and Morosko all had baskets to help repel Wooster’s run.
“Other teams are going to make a run on us, which we know,” Couto said. “What we’re learning how to do is regain our composure and continue to move in the right direction. The basketball IQ of this group is slowly climbing to where we want it
The Panthers’ defense was there to help stop the Generals when needed, as Perry’s active hands forced 25 turnovers“Brittany Miner is probably one of the quickest on-the-ball defenders in the area,” Couto said. “We rely on her a lot to bring that defensive pressure. When she brings it like she did tonight, good things happen for us off the ball.”Brown led Wooster with 19 points.“Turnovers just killed us tonight,”
Wooster coach Mike Baus said. “Perry just was more active than we were. There were times you could see that they just wanted it more than we did. We were playing like we were still on Christmas break at times.”