combine to hit
13 of 13 shots
By Justin Sokeland
Focused and flawless, Class 4-A No.5 Bedford North Lawrence sent a message to the rest of the basketball-bouncing state Tuesday night.
It reads, according to forward Dominique McBryde, “Everybody, watch out.”
The Lady Stars (2-0) were sensational to the point of amazing friend and foe alike. They charged to a 16-0 start and never relaxed while crushing No.14 Mooresville 65-45 at BNL Fieldhouse. Brittani Rizzi and McBryde scored 16 points each and Jenna Allen added 15 as BNL ended a five-game losing streak against a nemesis with a powerful performance.
This was not a blowout of a mediocre, schedule-stuffing rag team. Mooresville (1-1) started the season with a victory over Warren Central, the defending Class 4-A state champion. This was a merciless execution, from the opening minutes to the final horn. The Pioneers never got within single digits, never threatened to make BNL sweat.
But even that doesn’t explain some of the numbers:
McBryde and Allen, both sophomores, combined to hit 13 of 13 shots. Perfect.
BNL, with Sammy Dillman adding 10 points on 4-of-4 shooting, hit 24 of 37 shots, a crisp 64.9 percent.
“Wow,” Mooresville coach Mark Hurt said. And there was really nothing more to add.
“I thought they beat us on both sides of the ball,” Hurt said. “They ran their offense pretty well, and defensively they did a nice job of just staying in front of us. They executed better than us.”
The opening told the story. Allen and McBryde, the focal points of the offense, worked in the paint and combined for 10 points. Dillman hit a 3-pointer that prompted a Mooresville timeout, and Rizzi buried another for the 16-0 advantage.
Mooresville’s Jessica McFarland finally ended the drought at the 2:17 mark, converting a steal into a layup. But it was too late.
“That was disappointing,” Hurt said. “They got off to a really hot start. We came up empty the first few times, and when you look up it’s 11-0. And then you look up again and it’s 16-0.”
Rizzi, supremely confident with her shooter’s mentality, got into the act in the fourth quarter by hitting all four of her shots. Her last gave the Stars their biggest lead at 61-36.
“I just focused better,” Rizzi said. “In the locker room at halftime, I was like ‘I’m going to make the next shot.’ That’s what I kept thinking.”
BNL dominated the boards (because there were few rebounds for Mooresville to claim) by a 25-11 margin.
Mooresville’s Sarah Corbin scored 13 points, all but two in the second half. The Pioneers did not throw this one away (with only 10 turnovers), they just got taken apart by a team that might not be able to play much better. If they can, McBryde’s warning isn’t strern enough.
“They have a really strong team,” Hurt said.
BNL, the defending league champion, will start its chase for the Hoosier Hills Conference title when it visits Jeffersonville on Saturday night.
Photos courtesy of Phil Knight