Girls basketball: Newman’s defense stifles Carrillo


Cardinal Newman’s hard-nosed defense held host Maria Carrillo without a field goal in the first and third quarters while the Cardinals posted a 52-19 North Bay League victory Thursday night.

The win keeps Newman atop the league standings along with Santa Rosa. Both schools are 4-0. Newman is undefeated in 2014 having won five straight and is 11-5 overall.

The Cardinals took Carrillo out of the game by racing to a 17-3 lead after the first quarter. The Pumas’ only points came on free throws.

The home team finally scored a field goal two minutes into the second quarter.

In the third period, Newman’s defense held the Pumas to two free throws while increasing the advantage to 45-15 going to the final quarter.

Carrillo made only six field goals in 40 attempts, a 15 percent average.

“I was happy with our defense,” Newman coach Monica Mertle said. “We played predominantly man-to-man and did a good job of switching and boxing out.

“Offensively, I was pleased with how we shared the ball. That’s a part of the game we’ve been working to improve.”

Kylie Kiech was the game’s high scorer with 19 despite playing less than three quarters. Teammate Tiffany Salinas added 14, including six of her team’s first seven points.

Myranda Gradney led Carrillo with six points.

“I thought we got bullied,” Pumas coach Kris Mahiri said. “It didn’t cost us the game but it sure didn’t help.

“We got off on the wrong foot and never recovered. We did come back and get within 12 points just before halftime but then only scored two points in the third quarter. The bright spot for us was that we handled Newman’s press pretty well and we’ve had trouble with that in previous games.

“Also, the girls kept playing hard right up to the final buzzer. All season I’ve never faulted their effort.”

Carrillo is now 2-3 in league and 5-10 overall.

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