HIBBING — The Hibbing Community College women’s basketball likes to run and press, and it worked to perfection against Itasca.
The Cardinals scored 13 points off of 14 Viking turnovers in the first quarter en route to a 94-36 MCAC non-conference contest held Tuesday at Cardinal Gymnasium.
Hibbing started the game on a 11-2 run, and the Cardinals never looked back.
“We went out there with the game plan that we executed well,” Hibbing coach Kasey Palmer said. “We ran some pressure defense to start, then we went on to transitioning and fastbreaking.
“We wanted to get used to running. That’s what we did the entire game.”
The Cardinals outmatched the Vikings in the first quarter, turning those 14 Itasca turnovers into 13 points to lead 29-10 after one.
“That was important,” Palmer said. “That’s the reason we put that pressure defense on, hoping they would turn the ball over, so we get the chance to score.”
Coming into this game, Palmer was concerned about her teams’ ability to score, so they worked on their shooting after beating Riverland.
That paid off as the Cardinals shot well throughout the entire first half.
“We did miss a few layups, especially in the
second half, but in the first half, we shot over 40-percent from the 3-point line, and over 50 from two. That’s pretty much double what we shot last week.
“We did a lot of shooting over the past week, so it paid off a little bit for us.”
The second quarter didn’t get much better for the Vikings as Hibbing went on an 11-2 run to make it 40-12, and even though Itasca made a slight run at the end of the quarter, the Cardinals took a 53-21 lead into halftime.
If it was possible, Hibbing picked up its intensity on the defensive side of the ball to start the third quarter, and held Itasca scoreless for the first four minutes of the quarter.
Offensively, the Cardinals went on a 12-0 run to extend the lead to 44, 65-21.
When the quarter ended, Itasca scored six points.
“We started off with a little bit different pressure defense,” Palmer said. “We went to a zone press instead of full-court man to start for a few minutes. After that, we dropped to a half-court man to work on our help-side defense.”
The Vikings did play an aggressive game, and Palmer liked the way her team stood up to the challenge.
“It was good,” Palmer said. “We worked on staying-close defense, so I wanted them to stay close, play aggressive. It’s always nice when somebody else is aggressive back. We can learn to keep our heads and not get into foul trouble.”
Palmer got to clear her bench in the second half, and there wasn’t much of a letdown in play.
“At the half, I told them we’ll drop our defense back to halfcourt, but offfensively, I still wanted them running, pushing the ball,” Palmer said. “We weren’t going to change our offense just because we were up by so many points.
“I still wanted them to push the ball.”
Klaryssa Whelan led Hibbing with 21 points. Madeline Mann had 19, Alexis Desjarlait 18 and Bailey Roscoe 14.
Haley Murray had 14 for the Vikings. Maddy Shepard had 11.
ICC 10 11 6 9 — 36
HCC 29 24 25 16 — 94
Itasca: Haley Marray 14, Jordin McCartney 4, Michaela Kruger 1, Maddy Shepard 11, Caroline Cheney 6.
Hibbing: Shayler Lislegard 4, Bailey Roscoe 14, Madeline Mann 19, Alexis Desjarlait 18, Athena Dunham 3, Paige Romberg 9, Amaiyah Robinson 2, Klaryssa Whelan 21, Savannah Deragon 4.
Total Fouls: Itasca 15; Hibbing 15; Fouled Out: Tayleona Frazier; Free Throws: Itasca 5-7 ; Hibbing 10-16; 3-pointers: Shepard, Mann, Desjarlait 2, Roberg, Whelan 4.