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Watson scores 8, but Rochester falls to NorthWood

Burrus on offensive woes: ‘20 points ain’t going to pay the bills’


Sports Editor, RTC

NAPPANEE — Kallie Watson scored a team-high eight points in her first start of the season, but the Rochester girls basketball team fell to 0-4 after a 35-20 loss to host NorthWood at the Panther Pit on Nov. 12.

No other Rochester player beside had more than one field goal. Rochester shot 19 percent (7-37) from the field and did not attempt a free throw in the second half.

Joselyn Edwards hit three 3-pointers and scored a game-high nine points for NorthWood (2-0), who overcame 33 percent foul shooting and 22 turnovers. Claire Payne, a 6-2 sophomore post player, had eight points and eight rebounds.

NorthWood started on an 11-0 run and ended on a 9-0 run.

Rochester trailed 26-20 after a Rylee Clevenger 3-pointer in the fourth quarter, but the Lady Panthers did not score in the final six minutes.

“We had a lot of open looks,” Rochester coach Joel Burrus said. “When they went to that zone, they brought their tops up, but their bottoms stayed home. I told our girls you’ve got to attack because those guys are staying down to rebound. They’re not even really coming out. They make their tops do all the chasing, basically everything but the corner. And you noticed we got some pretty good looks there. … I think we’re pushing them as hard as we can.”

Defensively, Rochester held their third opponent in four games to under 40 points. NorthWood had two field goals and committed nine turnovers in the third quarters, but the Lady Zs could only snip one point off a 10-point halftime deficit.

“I felt like early we had a good start trying to take control of the game, but we know Rochester is going to stick around and keep chipping away and chipping away,” NorthWood first-year coach Taylor Burkhart said. “That’s what they do. They’re a good team. They’re an aggressive team. They started to make a comeback. After the third quarter, we sat down with our girls and said, ‘This is a time where these next four minutes we’ve got to make a statement and take the game if we’re going to win it.’ I feel like they stepped up.

“Rochester kept doing their thing, so hats off to them. They’re an aggressive team. They play hard, and I’m happy we could get the win today.”

Rochester also held NorthWood freshman Aaniyah Bonner, who had 23 points the previous night against West Noble, to just six.

“We’ve just got to continue to work on that,” Burrus said. “We held them to 35 today. (Number) 3 (Bonner) had six points. My gosh. (Number) 42 (Payne) had eight, and six of them were in the first quarter.”

Payne got loose for three first-quarter buckets in the paint, and Edwards had a 3-pointer and Bonner had a hoop. By the time reserve guard Emma Howdeshell scored Rochester’s first points on a drive along the left baseline, 4:58 had elapsed and the deficit was 11-2.

“We’ve got to continue with repetition,” Burrus said. “You know, in basketball, that’s the grind. You’ve got to repeat things and do those well before you can take them to the game floor.

“We’re seeing some things, but 20 points ain’t going to pay the bills. It’s not.”

NorthWood also won the JV game 26-10.

NorthWood 35, Rochester 20

ROCHESTER (20) (0-4)

Rily Holloway 0 0-0 0, Rylee Clevenger 1 0-0 3, Kallie Watson 3 0-0 8, Ella McCarter 1 2-3 4, Sydney Haughs 1 0-0 2, Maddie Heinzmann 0 0-0 0, Darah Strasser 0 0-0 0, Emma Howdeshell 1 1-2 3

TEAM: 7 3-5 20

NORTHWOOD (35) (2-0)

Aaniyah Bonner 3 0-1 6, Joselyn Edwards 3 0-0 9, Karis Bennett 2 0-0 4, Aaliyah Bonner 1 0-0 2, Claire Payne 4 0-2 8, Kailey Martin 0 0-0 0, Megan Yoder 1 2-2 4, Callie Johnson 0 0-0 0, Haylee Heflin 0 0-0 0, Brooklyn Redd 1 0-1 2

TEAM: 15 2-6 35

Three-point field goals:

Rochester 3 (Watson 2, Clevenger),

NorthWood 3 (Edwards 3)

Total fouls: Rochester 16, NorthWood 15

Turnovers: Rochester 14, NorthWood 22

Score by quarters

Rochester 2 10 5 3 – 20

NorthWood 13 9 4 9 – 35

JV: NorthWood 26, Rochester 10

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