The North Platte St. Pat's girls' basketball team handed Mullen its first loss on Tuesday night by beating the Lady Broncos 55-39 at the McGahan Activities Center.But it wasn't a pretty win for the Lady Irish, Coach Nathan Stienike said, because Mullen made things tough for his team.
"Mullen is a quality team, they run the floor really well and there's a reason they were 11-0," said Stienike. "We had to throw a lot of defensive presses at them. Some of them worked and some of them didn't."
St. Pat's (11-1) started to pull away a little toward the end of the first quarter and the Irish were up 19-14 at the end of the opening eight minutes of play.
In the first minute of the second quarter, the lead became 10 after a basket by Shelby Allberry that followed a Brook Boucher three-pointer.
But St. Pat's couldn't advance the lead much further in the first half because the Broncos made timely shots to keep the Lady Irish from going on another run. The score was 37-25 at halftime.
"Defensively, I thought we played really good," said Stienike. "At times we got turnovers for layups and the rest of the way, we just played even."
The third quarter saw no change with both teams trading baskets and the Irish held a 49-35 lead going into the fourth.
In the fourth, St. Pat's kept Mullen scoreless for nearly the first four and a half minutes of the fourth to close the game out.
"In the fourth quarter, we really buckled down and played defense," Stienike said. "We did a better job on (Clara) Vinton, who hurt us in the first half."
Mullen 14 11 10 4 - 39
St. Pat's 19 18 12 6 - 55
Mullen (39)-Amber Wright 6, Jessica Lovitt 11, Madison Tomlinson 6, Rachel Hoesing 3, Clara Vinton 13
St. Pat's (55)-Anna O'Malley 5, Mandy O'Malley 9, Samantha Byrn 8, Brook Boucher 8, Shelby Allberry 17, Brittany Lawrence 10
Free Throws: M 8-14, SP 7-14; Three Point Goals: M 1 (Vinton), SP 4 (Boucher 2, Allberry 2)