After playing to just a 13-10 lead at the half on Tuesday, the Escalon varsity girls basketball team turned up the pressure and ultimately defeated Delhi, 41-28.
The Dec. 15 road game saw a 15-5 run for the varsity girls in the fourth quarter, putting the game away.
“We were pretty lethargic for the first three quarters,” admitted coach Joseph Dalpogetti. “We were up 28-22 early in the fourth, they cut it to 28-26.”
Calling a time out, the coach and his team huddled to go over the strategy for the final few minutes of the game.
“I just said it would be disappointing if we let it slip away after leading the whole way,” Dalpogetti said. “Something just clicked and we went on a run.”
Jenelle Anderson had 20 points in the game, including 10 in the pivotal fourth quarter. Sarah Leal had 10 points, Haley Boyd added eight points, including two 3-pointers.
Continuing on the road, the girls headed to Tokay on Friday, Dec. 18 and nailed down a 53-18 victory.
“It was 22-7 after one, 29-10 at the half,” the coach said of his team taking control early in the contest.
The girls maintained a large lead over the third and fourth quarters, never letting Tokay get in the game.
“We played man defense the whole time and they really didn’t get into an offense,” Dalpogetti said of the host squad.
Though Tokay had a 5-3 lead in the opening minutes of the contest, Escalon knocked down four 3’s in the first quarter to stake their claim to the win.
Anderson had 13 points, Shelby McCune put in 11 and Justine Lawrence chipped in nine.
Dalpogetti said he was pleased with the pair of road wins, especially considering it was a hectic, stressful week for the team in the classroom, dealing with finals prior to the holiday break. They were scheduled to get in a couple of games this week at home, slated to host Johansen on Monday (Dec. 21) and Galt on Tuesday (Dec. 22) after The Times sent to press.
Prior to the home games this week, the girls had compiled a 7-1 mark in the preseason so far.
“We’re not really flashy, we play a half-court game, we have a nice blend of shooters and post presence,” Dalpogetti said.
This year, the goal is also to place team above self, with the squad playing an unselfish style of basketball.
“It’s not about who scores,” the coach said, adding that it’s just as important to make that pass to the open player for the good look.
What he is seeing is a team that is buying into that concept and willing to work together in a cooperative effort to get the wins.