Liberty's bell rung in 63-43 loss to Glencoe
As it turns out, size does matter.
The Glencoe girls basketball team used their size to beat-back a pesky Liberty squad midway through the second half to pull-away and defeat the road Falcons 63-43, Wednesday, Jan. 10 at Glencoe High School.
The Tide got 51 of their 63 points from posts Izzy Womack, Sydney Larrison and sophomore Brianna Ball, and held Liberty's quality set of young guards Taylin Smith, Livia Knapp and Talia Kahakai Wyatt to just 22 points, including just two three-pointers between them.
"We talked about 0 (Smith), 4 (Kahakai) and 10 (Knapp) being good three point shooters, and we wanted to make them put it on the floor and make them uncomfortable out there," said Glencoe head coach Kassi Conditt. "For the most part we did a good job of that."
The win was the Tide's fourth in a row, with three of those four wins coming at the expense of Metro League competition. The loss was Liberty's third in conference and came on the heels of a blowout win over Sunset, putting them in fifth place in the Metro while Glencoe sits alone in third.
Things didn't start great for Glencoe, as Liberty jumped-out to a 9-2 early lead on the back of five straight Kahakai points. But the Tide responded with a Larrison three and seven Womack points to take a 14-9 lead. But the Falcons answered, getting free throws and a late basket from junior guard Emily Le to close the quarter trailing 16-13.
The second quarter started much like the first, with Liberty getting six quick points, four from Knapp who for the first time was asserting herself offensively. From there the two teams for the most part traded buckets until Glencoe's 5-foot-8 guard Breauna Van Dyke nailed a three as the clock ticked down prior to the half, making the score 28-26 in favor of the Falcons as the two teams headed to the locker room.
Kahakai opened the third with a basket to give Liberty a four point lead, but Glencoe scored 10 of the game's next 12 points, with Larrison accounting for six of them. From that point it turned into the Larrison, Womack, and Ball show, with the three bigs tallying all but two of the Tide's remaining 27 points and repeatedly abusing the Falcons in the paint with lay-ins and put-backs.
Something Coach Conditt was more-than-happy to take.
"They start four smalls and a big, so we definitely wanted to try and get that person with the mismatch to post up on the block," said Conditt. "But it wasn't as if we specifically practiced for that, but I have to give credit to the girls for recognizing when to take advantage of a mismatch they saw."
Liberty has size as well, with 6-foot posts Clara and Nicole Robbins, but Nicole never got started and the sophomore Clara — while getting into the action with eight second-half points — battled admirably, but was fighting an uphill battle against the Tide trio on this night.
"I noticed they had some athletic bigs, so it did surprise me a bit that they didn't utilize them more," said Conditt. "But our girls did a good job of playing good defense and not letting them get set-up on the block."
And how did the coach feel about her team's performance overall?
"It went really well," she said. "We were trading baskets for a long time and I think the girls did a good job of keeping their composure and keeping with the game plan and being patient and not sped up. We've talked a lot about playing at our tempo and not theirs, and we did that tonight."
Glencoe is next scheduled to travel to Westview Friday, Jan. 12, while Liberty will play at Jesuit.