Blazers Beat BHS
SHS Takes Third Straight District Title, 56-42
Posted: February 16, 2013
The SHS girls celebrated after winning their third consecutive district championship Friday in Penn Laird. (Photos by Michael Reilly)
Broadway’s Heather Cantrell battles for the ball with Spotswood’s Nikki Lam on Friday in Penn Laird.
Then, Dodson prescribed a pretty good game plan for his Spotswood High School girls’ basketball team.
The Blazers switched defenses late in the third quarter, and they held Broadway to just nine points the rest of the way in a 56-42 win to take the Valley crown Friday, their third straight tournament title and their 15th straight win over a district foe.
“I think it kind of just mixed ’em up,” SHS sophomore guard Elizabeth Dofflemyer said of her team’s defensive adjustment. “It frazzled ’em.”
Both teams advance to their respective Region III tournaments – Broadway (17-5) in Division 4, Spotswood (24-1) in D-III. The Gobblers will host a regional quarterfinal game against Harrisonburg on Monday, while the Blazers have a bye into the semifinals Thursday to be played at a to-be-determined neutral site.
Just like the two regular-season games between Broadway and Spotswood, Friday’s meeting see-sawed for nearly three quarters. But unlike the last two meetings – which were decided by six points or fewer – the Blazers pulled away comfortably in the fourth.
They have their defense to thank for it.
After the Gobblers cut it to 35-32 midway through the third, Dodson – who was named the district Coach of the Year after the game – backed off his full-court pressure and put his daughter, Tayler Dodson, on BHS leading scorer Heather Cantrell.
By the time SHS sophomore Elizabeth Dofflemyer hit a 3-pointer from the corner with under a minute left in the fourth, Cantrell had fouled out, and the score read 56-37 – a 21-5 run for the hosts.
“We froze,” BHS freshman guard Kierstin Roadcap said of the second half. “We beat ourselves. We stopped being aggressive, and we just shut down.”
It also helped that Cantrell got in foul trouble. The senior committed her fourth foul on an over-the-back call with 6 minutes, 14 seconds remaining, and didn’t return until the 3:07 mark. Broadway didn’t score in that stretch, and Spotswood increased its lead to 46-35.
“I was thinking, ‘Darn it, Heather, why did you do that?’” Cantrell said of her fourth foul.
BHS coach Bobby Mongold, too, said his lone senior “has got to be smarter than that.” But he was more displeased with how his Gobblers handled Spotswood’s defensive adjustments.
“When they switched defenses, we just became really passive,” he said. “…There were times when we had girls who were wide-open; we didn’t take it. We had mismatches we needed to go to; we didn’t exploit those. So we just didn’t read what they were doing.”
The Blazers had none of those problems. Senior guard Bailey Williams, playing her final game at SHS, scored 17 points and was a menace defensively for Broadway’s guards. She was named the district’s Player of the Year after the game.
“As good as we were tonight, I think this was Bailey’s night,” Dodson said. “…I think a lot like [older sister and 2010 SHS graduate] Carter [Williams] a couple years ago, the sense of urgency is here, the end is near, and it can be seen. So I think at this time, she’s very focused on doing what it takes to win.”
Dofflemyer added 15 points, and junior forward Dodson had 12, plus a couple emphatic blocks of Cantrell. That helped Spotswood beat Broadway for the second straight time in the district final. The Blazers overcame an 11-point deficit midway through the fourth quarter of last year’s championship.
There would be no late comeback in this one.
Cantrell had 11 of her team-high 14 points in the first half, and Roadcap had nine for BHS, which led twice in the first half – but only by a point.
Broadway’s five losses this season have all come at the hands of Spotswood and East Rockingham, two schools that lie just a few miles apart.
“We’ve got to learn to believe in ourself,” Cantrell said. “If we believed in ourselves, then we’d get really far.”
NOTE: All-Valley District selections were named after the game. The first team: Spotswood’s Williams and Dodson; Broadway’s Cantrell and Roadcap; Fort Defiance’s Devon Byrd and Reagan Uhler; and Waynesboro’s Brie Moore.
The second team: Spotswood’s Dofflemyer; Broadway’s Brianna Zook and Madyson Alger; Harrisonburg’s Sydney Knupp and Sara Shenk-Moreno; Fort Defiance’s Megan Good; and R.E. Lee’s Secret Bryant.
Morgan 1 0-2 2, Delawder 1 0-0 3, Cantrell 5 4-4 14, Earhart 2 0-2 4, Bland 1 0-0 2, Roadcap 2 4-7 9, Zook 4 0-0 8. Totals 16 8-15 42.
Williams 7 0-0 17, Lindsay 3 0-1 7, Dofflemyer 5 2-2 15, Lam 0 2-2 2, Dodson 4 4-7 12, Propes 1 0-0 2. Totals 20 8-12 56.
Broadway 12 13 10 7 - 42
Spotswood 13 15 14 14 - 56
3-Point Goals—Broadway 2 (Delawder 1, Roadcap 1), Spotswood 7 (Williams 3, Lindsay 1, Dofflemyer 3). Fouled Out—Broadway (Cantrell). Rebounds—Broadway 25 (Cantrell 6), Spotswood 14 (Dodson 4). Total Fouls—Broadway 11, Spotswood 12.