Members of the public aren’t usually privy to what goes on in and at practices on a daily basis.
Players and coaches usually go through their regular game preparation without letting everyone on the outside know exactly what did or didn’t happen in that daily session. But for anyone who was at the London-Bishop Ready girls basketball tilt Wednesday at Ready, you kind of got a sense of how things went during the Lady Red Raiders practice the couple days leading up to the game according to coach Kevin Long.
London (6-0) did just enough to come away with a 41-39 victory, its sixth win in as many tries, but Long wasn’t exactly happy about what he saw on the court.
“I just told them we played like practiced the last couple days,” he said. “Sloppy practices and not doing what we need to do carried over to a ballgame. There’s no other way to put it.”
London appeared to be off all night. Passes weren’t as sharp, shots that usually go down didn’t fall and the team seemed to get outworked by a Ready team known for its work ethic.
“We knew coming in Ready was going to be the toughest hard-nosed team we’ve faced,” Long said. “They bring their lunch boxes, we had to box out and be stronger. We didn’t adjust to those things well. That’s a good team that plays hard. For us moving forward we’ve got to be better prepared for those type of situations.”
Ready raced out to a 7-2 advantage early, but London scored the last 10 points of the quarter to take a 12-7 advantage after the first period and never surrendered the lead.
London was up 22-16 at the half and opened up a 33-26 gap after three quarters, but Ready fought back and got to within a point at 33-32 with 6:00 to go in the game. The Red Raiders turned the ball over on three successive possessions but the Silver Knights were unable to capitalize.
Rachel Alexander hit a jumper to make it 35-32 and Hannah Coleman scored in the inside to push the London lead back to 37-32. Ready’s Derricka Bramwell scored to make it 37-34, but Karlie Alexander knocked down a long jumper to keep the game a two-score affair.
The game was tied 39-39 when Coleman made a move at the high post against the Knights 2-3 zone and found Patterson cutting to the basket for what turned out to be the winning basket.
“Our thing right now is we’re going to see a lot of zone,” Long said. “We’ve got a ton of capable attackers, we finally got to a point there at the end where we attacked more. We were moving the ball around the perimeter. At the half we made some adjustments and had our girls attack the basket more in the second half. We didn’t do great with it but we did enough.
“At the end of the day a win is a win. You never want the nail-biters, but for us from a composure standpoint and a challenge standpoint, we needed a game like this. We need to test ourselves physically. Ugly or not we’ll take the win. “
Coleman led the Raiders with 10 points, Rachel Alexander had nine, Patterson finished with eight and Karlie Alexander chipped in six. London played without team leader Emily Minner who is out with an injury.
Reach Chris Miles at 740-852-1616, ext. 1618 or via Twitter @MadPressSports.