Head coach Kip Bough knew Monday’s game was going to be a tough one going in. The Lady Pirates held on and trailed by just three at the half, but Ozark came back in the second half to take the 50-39 win.
Bough said Ozark is known for being good three-point shooters, so they decided to focus their defense on that.
“We really extended our defense,” Bough said.
He said they could do that, as long as senior Priscilla Williams was in the middle and wasn’t in foul trouble. And the strategy worked, as Ozark didn’t hit any three-pointers in the second half.
“Defensively, we were where we needed to be,” Bough said.
Although the Lady Pirates prevented Ozark from hitting any three-pointers, they were able to hit a lot of inside shots. Williams had three fouls. Out of fear of getting a fourth foul throughout the third quarter, she didn’t challenge anything.
“(Williams) was basically just giving up layups,” Bough said. “They knew that.”
At the end of the third, Ozark had managed to battle their way back to a 42-31 lead. In the final quarter of the game, it was pretty back and forth. Williams was able to be more aggressive in the final eight minutes, but Ozark had already established an 11-point lead.
Bough said that’s what the game essentially came down to, and they kind of expect teams to try and focus their energy on Williams.
In the final eight minutes, Priscilla put up eight points. Only one other Lady Pirate added points to the board in the fourth quarter.
After Monday’s loss, the Lady Pirates are 7-6 for the season.