- Val T.
Haughs, Holloway help Rochester continue streak vs. Lewis Cass
Lady Zs hold Lady Kings without field goal for final 11:36
BY VAL TSOUTSOURIS
Sports Editor, RTC
WALTON — Sydney Haughs and Rily Holloway scored 11 points each, and the visiting Rochester girls basketball team’s zone defense held sectional rival Lewis Cass without a field goal for the final 11:36 in notching a 47-15 win on Nov. 23.
Kennedy Jackson added nine points and Millie Scorsone added eight for Rochester (4-3), who defeated Lewis Cass for the ninth straight time. Rochester’s last loss to Lewis Cass occurred on Nov. 22, 2011.
The 15 points allowed were the fewest the Lady Zs have allowed in a game since a 63-14 win at Whitko on Jan. 11, 2020.
Kendal Johnson led Lewis Cass (2-4) with seven points, but she made just 2 of 17 field goal attempts against Rochester’s 2-3 zone. Johnson has averaged over 15 points per game since transferring from Winamac to Lewis Cass following the 2019-20 season.
“We knew we had to know where she was at at all times,” Rochester coach Brian Jennings said of defending Johnson. “I think our biggest thing is we didn’t really feel that she would go to the basket extremely hard against a zone. We didn’t feel that she would go in and post up against our bigs in there. We just need to stay close to her on the perimeter and know where she was at on the outside. Their offense goes through her. It’s no secret, so we had to watch where she was.”
The 2-3 zone also had to be mindful if Lewis Cass put a player in the high post area around the foul line to facilitate their offense. That also was neutralized, according to Jennings.
“And I thought the other thing we had to do defensively is take away that high-post cut. They usually bring somebody to the high post and feed there, and then they got kick outs. I thought our top guards did an excellent job of dropping down and taking care of the high post.”
Lewis Cass’ only field goal of the second half came when Hallie Coffey zipped a pass from the left foul line extended to Johnson for a layup. That made the score 27-12.
Rochester outscored Lewis Cass 20-3 the rest of the game.
“So they start out in their 1-2-2, and that’s what caused a lot of issues in the first half,” Lewis Cass coach Kyle Amor said. “And then they were able to just get comfortable and sit in that 2-3. But anytime you get any type of dribble drive against their wings or their guards, you’re going to run into a force inside, and they’ve got enough bigs to go around to where they just contested everything. And when you can’t hit shots from the perimeter, you have to rely on getting shots in the paint, and they just do a nice job of neutralizing anything in the paint.”
Scorsone scored the next five points on two post buckets and a free throw that completed a 3-point play.
Haughs then hit her second 3-pointer of the quarter, a rainmaker from the left of the top of the key.
Haughs said she and Kallie Watson have been using “the gun,” a machine that kicks balls out to shooters beyond the 3-point line, in practice to work on their shooting. Against Lewis Cass, it was Jackson and Scorsone who were kicking the ball out from the post to the perimeter to shooters like Haughs.
“If I don’t have a shot, my first look is Kennedy and Millie,” Haughs said. “Because if I give them the ball, then our best shot is when they give us kickouts. So that’s a win-win for me and the posts.”
Both Savanah Eccles and Rylee Clevenger scored their first career varsity field goals in the fourth quarter; Clevenger’s bucket was a 3-pointer in the final minute.
Rochester also committed a season-low nine turnovers, including none in the third quarter.
The Lady Zs improved to 2-0 without Lexy Thomas, who missed her second straight game with an injury to her midsection. Thomas scored 19 of Rochester’s 27 points in a loss to Peru five days earlier.
“Lexy’s a big part of Zebra basketball,” Holloway said. “Lexy’s our leader, our senior. So all of us have had to step up. And we’ve all taken our roles very seriously without her. And she helps us on the bench. … We’ve accepted that she’s not going to be there, so we have to work with each other a lot more.”
Rochester scored the first eight points and never trailed. Jackson hit a free throw and then hit a 15-footer. Haughs hit a right baseline jumper and then a 3-pointer with help from a Kami Burkett save.
The lead was 13-5 after one quarter, and the Lady Kings stayed within 17-10 on a Kinsey Mennen 3-pointer from the right wing.
But Rochester countered with a 10-0 run covering the second and third quarters. Jackson hit a 15-foot runner, and Holloway scored in transition off a Burkett feed and again on a steal and layup.
Haughs opened the scoring in the second half with a 3-pointer.
But the shooting could not overshadow the defense. Players communicated with each other and did not get caught watching the ball.
“It was really good,” Haughs said. “We talked better. We were in gaps. And we help a lot better. As long we talk, our defense is good.”
Rochester also won the JV game 37-26. Clevenger and Darah Strasser scored nine points each, and Mia Howdeshell added eight for the Lady Zs. Ella McCarter and Audrey Bolinger had four each, and Eccles had three.
Rochester 47, Lewis Cass 15
ROCHESTER (47) (4-3)
Rily Holloway 5 0-1 11, Kallie Watson 0 0-0 0, Sydney Haughs 4 0-0 11, Kennedy Jackson 4 1-5 9, Millie Scorsone 3 2-3 8, Rylee Clevenger 1 0-0 3, Audrey Bolinger 0 0-0 0, Ella McCarter 0 0-0 0, Kami Burkett 1 0-0 3, Lilith Eaton 0 0-0 0, Savanah Eccles 1 0-0 2, Elizabeth Weaver 0 0-0 0
TEAM: 19 3-9 47
LEWIS CASS (15) (2-4)
Kendal Johnson 2 2-2 7, Izabella Tharp 0 0-0 0, Hallie Coffey 2 0-1 4, Elly Logan 0 0-0 0, Kinsey Mennen 1 0-2 3, Jaylynn Elpers 0 0-0 0, Maiara Bento 0 0-0 0, Faith Helvie 0 1-2 1, Ashlee Lindley 0 0-0 0, Lauran Walker 0 0-0 0
TEAM: 5 3-7 15
Three-point field goals:
Rochester 6 (Haughs 3, Holloway, Burkett, Clevenger),
Lewis Cass 2 (Johnson, Mennen)
Total fouls: Rochester 9, Lewis Cass 9
Turnovers: Rochester 9, Lewis Cass 19
Score by quarters
Rochester 13 10 12 12 – 47
Lewis Cass 5 5 4 1 – 15
JV: Rochester 37, Lewis Cass 26
Watch full game here: