Early on the Ravens played even. Both teams came out pressing and the score was tied at four apiece midway through the first quarter. That’s when the dam broke for Rocky River. Myers Park substituted in an entire second team.
That depth took the wind out of the sails of the Ravens. Myers Park scored the next 12 points in a row and the quarter ended with the Mustangs leading 16-5.
The second quarter was similar to the first. The constant pressure made the most basic basketball moves a chore. Even when the Ravens got past the Mustangs’ press, they became either rushed or tentative.╩ Rocky River never got into a rhythm offensively. The score was 40-13 at halftime.
The second half was more evenly matched, but the damage on the scoreboard had already been done.╩ Both teams
scored 19 points in the half, making the final score 59-32.
“We showed more energy and poise in the second half, but obviously Myers Park is a very good team,” Head Coach Odis Gadson said after the game, in maybe the understatement of the season.
Sophomore Guard Hydeia Harvey led the Ravens’ scoring with 12 points.
“They didn’t surprise us; their execution is just so good.” Coach Gadson said. “Myers Park has played together for a long time and they have complete trust in each other.╩ Each of their players knows where their teammates will be on the court, usually without looking. That’s a lethal combination.”
The team has now lost three games in a row.╩ The teams’ inexperience can be seen in the streakiness of its results this year. In the teams’ last 13 games, they have streaks of two wins, four losses, four wins, and now three losses.
“This was a tough loss, but at this point we are learning lessons that will help us down the road,” Coach Gadson said. “There’s no reason why our team can’t eventually get to where Myers Park is now. I expect us to have a winning record the rest of the way.”
Hydeia Harvey leads the team in scoring, rebounds and steals. She is also second on the team in assists.
The team will now go through the second half of the conference schedule, replaying their conference opponents.
The Ravens record stands at 8-8 overall and 2-5 in the conference.
Sometimes statistics can be deceiving, but that’s not the case for Rocky River’s scoring stats. They have a .500 overall record and their scoring average is 46.5 per game, while their opponents are scoring 46.7 per game.╩ That’s about as close as you can get.
Their conference record of 2-5 is equally obvious. The Ravens score 41.6 per game in conference while giving up points 52.7 points per game.
Next week’s games are: 1/29 at home versus the Butler Bulldogs which won the first meeting 44-38; 1/30 at the Providence Panthers (make-up of postponed game) which previously defeated Rocky River 48-41; and 2/1 at home against the S. Mecklenburg Sabres which the Ravens defeated 53-36 in January.