Irish steal show against Pioneers

DeSales' girls nab 18 steals while Mac-Hi turns the ball over 37 times in the Irish's 58-16 victory Tuesday night.

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DeSales's Brigit Lyons (right) delivers the right hook as she loops her arm under Mac-Hi's Jolene Brannan's elbow as the two battle for a loose ball.

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Mac-Hi's Avery Wells can't get around DeSales' Cheyenne Kessler.

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DeSales's Allison Wujek and Mac-Hi's Makia Carlson tangle for the ball.

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Mac-Hi's Mackenzie Fite leaps for the ball in front of DeSales' Stephanie Ferrel.

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Mac-Hi's Makia Carlson prepares to fire the ball down court to a speeding teammate, but the Pioneers' go-long effort to beat the up court Irish pressure proved futile in Tuesday night's loss.

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Mac-Hi's Makia Carlson gets a rebound in front of DeSales' Allison Wujek.

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Mac-Hi's Makia Carlson puts pressure on DeSales'Allison Wujek.

MILTON-FREEWATER - The DeSales girls basketball team stole the show against the Mac-Hi Pioneers here Tuesday night with 18 steals and 37 Pioneer turnovers.

The Irish jumped out to a 21-3 lead in the first quarter and won, 58-16.

"We're a team that puts a lot of pressure on our opponents and get steals," Irish coach Tim Duncan said. "We rely on that to get more possessions. We're quick and we use that to our advantage to get into the passing lanes."

During the first-quarter run of the Irish, Mac-Hi committed 14 turnovers on eight steals by DeSales and the Irish hit three shots from downtown.

The three shots from 3-point range early were hit by Claire Konen, Brigit Lyons and Chantel Blanc.

In all, the Irish hit nine 3-pointers in the game.

"We're a good 3-point shooting team," Duncan said. "Even better than you saw tonight. You saw it in streaks tonight."

The Irish outrebounded the Pioneers 28-27, with nine offensive boards to their credit.

"It is nice to have some size inside and it has helped with offensive rebounding," Duncan said. "We really haven't had that combination of speed and athleticism in awhile."

The Irish committed just 11 turnovers compared to 37 by Mac-Hi.

"Our goal is to have at least under 20 turnovers at the varsity level," Mac-Hi coach Nicole Christian said. "Tonight, we made progress in the second half, where we only turned the ball over 10 times compared to 27 in the first half.

"We don't have any real experienced guards or ball handlers," she said. "It is something that we will continue to work on."

Seven DeSales players had five or more points, with Abby Crowley leading the way with 10 points. Blanc had three 3-pointers to lead the bombing attack of the Irish.

The Irish didn't, however, shoot well from the free-throw line. DeSales was just 5-of-14 from the charity stripe.

Mac-Hi didn't fare any better with a 1-of-8 showing.

"I've been coaching girls basketball for many years now," Duncan said, "and I've only had about two teams that could shoot free throws well. Don't ask me why either, because we practice more free throws than anybody else around."

Mac-Hi had just three team steals and was led in rebounding by Cheyenne Kessler with 10 boards. The top scorers for Mac-Hi were Avery Wells and Makia Carlson with four points apiece.

DeSales 58, Mac-Hi 16

DESALES (58) - Ferrel 2 1-2 5, Zander 2 2-4 7, Crowley 4 1-1 10, Higgins 2 0-0 5, Buley 2 0-0 4, Blanc 3 0-3 9, Wujek 3 0-2 6, Konen 3 0-1 9, Lyons, B. 0 1-2 1, Lyons, A. 1 0-0 3. Totals 22 5-14 58.

MAC-HI (16) - Wells 2 0-0 4, Brannan 1 0-0 2, Fite 1 0-0 2, Riedel 0 1-2 1, Carlson 2 0-6 4, Erm 1 0-0 3. Totals 7 1-8 16.

DeSales 21 8 18 11 - 58

Mac-Hi 3 2 8 3 - 16

3-point goals - DeS 9 (Zander, Crowley, Higgins, Blanc 3, A. Lyons, Konen 2), Mac 1 (Erm). Total Fouls - DeS 15, Mac 14. Fouled out - none. Technical fouls - none. Rebounds - DeS 28 (A. Lyons 4, Blanc 4), Mac 27 (Kessler 10). Turnovers - DeS 11, Mac 37.

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