The Raider girls basketball team hosted CAAC White rival Lansing Catholic on Friday night.
The Portland offense moved the ball well in the first half, putting up 18 points. The Raiders aggressive style of defense, that has been their signature this season, was impressive in the first half too causing multiple turnovers just before the intermission. The Raiders led at the half 18-17.
The Raider defense continued to fluster the Cougars in the third quarter, holding them to only 8 points, while excellent execution and ball movement enabled five different Raiders to score in the quarter. Portland was able to extend their lead to 37-25 at the end of the third.
While the Cougars by no means walked off quietly into the night, the Raiders speed, conditioning, and pressure defense appeared to takes its toll on the visitors in the final quarter. The Cougars showed some signs of fatigue in their errant passes and turnovers.
The Raiders would end up winning 46-35.
Score by quarter:
1st – 2nd – 3rd – 4th – Final
Portland 11 – 7 – 19 – 9 - 46
LC 7 – 10 – 8 – 10 – 35
Juniors Lauren Hanes and Maddie Jacobs led the Cougars offensively with 12 points each.
Freshman Ashley Bower led the Raiders offense with 23 points. Senior Lesley Barker and Freshman Breckyn Werner each contributed 6 points.
After the game, Raider head coach Jason Haid said, “This is the team (Lansing Catholic) that the coaches had predicted to win the conference at the beginning of the season, so the girls had their eye on this game for quite a while. It was a good test for us to see where we are at, and I thought our girls played very aggressive tonight.”
Haid added, “Coming back out of Christmas break you are always worried about what kind of shape they are in. I think our legs got us in a bit of trouble offensively early in the first half. We didn’t shoot the ball particularly well in the second quarter, but I think ultimately in the end, our pressure kind of wore them down in the second half, and we were able to muster up some energy there. We had some girls come off the bench and give us some good minutes. It was just a great team win for us. I know Ashley (Bower) led us in scoring again, but there were so many big plays. I think in the second half, the biggest turning point was when Cally Goodman came out and hit a three point shot, and Jolee Pung has been searching for her outside shot and she was able to knock one down, and that was kind of a turning point I think for us, hitting some shots from some other girls kind of gave us a new found energy and helped us defensively to really shut them down in the second half.”
The Raiders move to 5-0 on the year. Their next contest is on Tuesday the 8th when they host the Red Wings of St. Johns.