‘Frustrating’ Start Leads To Big Loss For King’s
WILKES-BARRE — The final tune up before MAC Freedom Conference play resumes this week did not go exactly how King’s coach Caitlyn Hadzimichalis envisioned, especially after coming off an impressive road win on Thursday at Susquehanna. The frustration level for Hadzimichalis started to grow from the opening tip after Lycoming scored the first 15 points of the game. It continued after she had to burn a pair of timeouts by the 3:18 mark of the first quarter after the Warriors had built an 18-point lead. It would be easy to chalk Lycoming’s 77-55 victory Saturday afternoon at the Scandlon Gymnasium as just a bad day at the gym. But Hadzimichalis was having nothing of the sort. She quickly identified the issue, and plans on getting it corrected even faster. “It’s extremely frustrating, it’s the most frustrated I have been all season,” Hadzimichalis said. “We are sitting in a classroom being taught the same lessons and we are not learning it. We need to stop having games like this where we collapse. Once is too many; we have done it four times this year.” King’s made just 2 of 13 shots from the floor in the first quarter putting the Monarchs in a hole that was too big to climb out of. From Lycoming’s perspective, it came out and shot 72.2 percent from the floor in the first quarter opening up a 28-4 lead. King’s did not score its first points of the game until the 4:05 mark of the opening quarter when Mackenzie Yori hit a jumper from the foul line. The second quarter was a different story for King’s. The Monarchs came out with a higher level of energy. Yori opened things up with a 3-pointer, sparking a five-point run that cut the deficit to 17. The players on the floor were starting to feel good about the direction the game was taking. The reserves on the bench were on their feet encouraging their teammates. Six consecutive points to close the second quarter had the Monarchs within 14 at halftime. Yori scored four of the six coming off assists from Samantha Rajza. “What is encouraging is that when we go, it looks good,” Hadzimichalis said. “When we play by the rules that we have been practicing since Oct. 15, we go an attack. Once we get that consistency, then I will feel much better.” For as encouraging the Monarchs felt at the end of the second quarter, the momentum of the game quickly shifted with one Lycoming basket to open the third. That was when Becca Painter connected on a 3-pointer from the left corner. That one shot seemed to deflate the Monarchs and sent the Warriors on a 12-6 run that saw King’s down by 20. “Lycoming played well, they made all the shots and had good ball pressure,” Hadzimichalis said. “It is us, we have to figure it out. We have been teetering on it since last year. We haven’t put our foot down on the gas pedal. In the second quarter we can score points. We don’t hate losing. We like winning. We need to start to hate losing.” The loss dropped the Monarchs to 7-6 on the year as they get set to resume conference play on Wednesday at Manhattanville and return home on Saturday to play FDU-Florham. It is not the easiest of weeks to prepare for in a conference where there are never any guaranteed victories. For now, Hadzimichalis is interested in seeing how here team responds heading into conference play where the Monarchs stand 1-1. “It depends what mentality we come out with,” she said. “We need to attack and come out confident, and follow the rules that are set forth. If we do that, we can play with anybody in the league. If we show poor body language and let teams control what we do, we are in trouble. I don’t want to be the team that could have. I want to be the team that does.” LYCOMING (77) Lutz 7 1-2 15, Wagner 0 0-0 0, McFadden 6 2-5 15, Painter 6 0-0 16, Kline 7 2-2 17, Jones 0 0-0 0, Purcell 1 0-1 2, Lamoreaux 1 0-0 2, Vuz 4 0-0 10, Schoonover 0 0-0 0, Helminiak 0 0-0 0, Treude 0 0-0 0. Totals: 32 5-10 77. KING’S (55) Steeber 7 0-2 15, Prociak 4 1-2 9, Dippre 3 0-0 8, Yori 6 0-0 14, Dillinger 0 0-0 0, Kriston 2 0-0 5, Rajza 2 0-0 4, Wolbert 0 0-0 0, Gabel 0 0-0 0, Stein 0 0-0 0, Coleman 0 0-0 0. Totals: 24 1-4 55. Lycoming28 9 27 13 — 77 King’s 4 19 18 14 — 55 3-point goals: McFadden, Painter (4), Kline, Vuz (2), Steeber, Dippre (2), Yori (2), Kriston. Contact the writer: email@example.com; 570 821-2062; @CVSteveBennett on Twitter.