Wildcats fall in return to play

Corey Stolzenbach/The Herald
Sophomore Jasmin Mehringer (21) goes for a bucket that she converted against Vincennes Rivet Monday night. However, the Wildcats came up short against the Patriots, 51-41.

By COREY STOLZENBACH
sports@dcherald.com

VINCENNES — Jasper trimmed, but couldn’t quite erase its deficit in the second half Monday night against Vincennes Rivet — taking a 51-41 loss.

The Wildcats (2-4) led the Patriots for much of the first half in the Adams Coliseum, but trailed, 18-15, going into the locker room at halftime. Things only got worse when the Patriots went on a 9-0 run to begin the second half.

“Sometimes we come out and we don’t make very good decisions with the basketball,” Jasper coach Jessica Mehringer said. “We didn’t get some good looks, and in turn, they got good looks because we didn’t get good looks. And it was one of the focal points we talked about before the game even started was we got to take care of the basketball so that they’re not getting easy looks, and that’s kind of what happened in the first part of that one.”

Yet, Jasper still did the work to hang with a Rivet team that improved to 10-3 after Monday’s game. The Patriots have five players on their roster listed being at least six feet tall, outsizing the Wildcats, but Jasper still competed.

Seniors Emma Shelton and Hannah Schwenk did their part to narrow Rivet’s lead through 3-pointers and buckets at the rim, respectively. Shelton notched a game-high 17 points, and a bucket from Schwenk, who had 12, narrowed it to 44-40 late in the game.

However, junior Maddisyn Halter, who scored three points through the first three quarters, took over in the fourth for Rivet, scoring nine of her team’s 18 points. Halter grabbed an offensive rebound that made it 46-40, sparking the Patriots to finish strong, while Jasper only tallied a single point after her bucket.

“We were really focusing on #11 (senior Lauren Carie) because she had hit just about everything that she shot, and we finally got the defensive possession on her that we wanted,” Mehringer said. “She took a long shot and we just didn’t see it. I think our people on the back side just didn’t see the shot go up, and we just didn’t get a body on anybody.

“So, it was unfortunate that we had that good effort and did what we wanted to do defensively, but didn’t get the board,” she continued. “So, yeah, that hurt pretty good.”

This was the first time since Dec. 10 that the Wildcat girls took the floor when they fell to Vincennes Lincoln, 47-38. Jasper cancelled all athletic events for two weeks in December, and the girls basketball team prompted the return to varsity competition Monday night.

Mehringer told the Herald that her players want to play, that they’re hungry and have had to many breaks where they weren’t able to play. She added that the Wildcats are looking forward to the rest of January and getting ready for the sectional.

Jasper will have another break this week, albeit a short one. The Wildcats will have a couple of days to get ready for county rival Forest Park Thursday at home for Senior Night. Mehringer said they will focus on working on layups and situations before getting back at it against the Rangers.

“Forest Park’s a nice team, they’re well coached, so I’m looking forward to that game,” she said.




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