The Thunder Mountain High School girls basketball team rolled to a 55-36 win over Lathrop in day two of the Mt. McKinley Bank Holiday Classic at Monroe Catholic on Friday.
The Falcons played a sloppy first half according to coach Tanya Nizich but still held a 16-11 lead after one quarter of play as Ashley Young, who missed the first game after staying in Juneau with the flu, stepped straight off the plane and onto the court to net eight of her 22 points and Michaela Demmert canned two 3-pointers.
Young hit another four in the second quarter and Ava Tompkins four of her 12 game points to take a 28-22 lead into the break.
“Our goal in the second half was blocking out on first shots so they wouldn’t get second attempts,” Nizich said. “That helped our defense out a lot. Controlling the tempo of the game in the second half and not getting flustered by their pressure was key. We gave the tempo to them in the first half and we had to get that back.”
Lathrop’s Lizotte kept the Malemutes in the game with 13 of her team-high 21 points in the first half.
The Falcons held Lathrop to just four points in the third quarter.
“We really talked about moving our feet on defense,” Nizich said. “Giving them room and trapping them in the corners. Once we got our rotations down we got a lot of steals.”
Siosi Tupou recorded a game-high eight steals and 10 rebounds for the Falcons.
“Siosi was all over the court,” Nizich said. “She stepped up for us.”
Demmert added eight points for the Falcons, Cheyenne Ekis seven, Alondra Echiverri four and Tupou two.
TMHS hit 8-21 at the free throw line; Lathrop went 12-18.
Additional Malemutes scoring included Meadows five, Alexis Shipman and Warner four apiece and Alaynna Flanders two.
The Falcons play Palmer at 3 p.m. Saturday. TMHS beat Monroe 43-18 to open the tournament on Thursday and Palmer beat Lathrop 53-23.
“We definitely have to adjust some things for Palmer,” Nizich said. “They are a bit bigger team so we need a different game plan.”