BANGOR, Maine — After Bangor Christian senior Meredith Bean torched Jonesport-Beals for eight first-quarter points Monday night, the Royalettes switched to a zone defense to take that threat away.
The problem was, the Patriots have two dynamite outside shooters in Emma Johnson and Whitney Holmes.
Johnson, a junior, went 4-for-7 from beyond the 3-point arc while Holmes hit a couple of big shots to spark a 15-2 second-quarter run as coach Phil Robinson’s club improved to 6-1 with a convincing 47-17 win at Eastern Maine Community College’s Johnston Gym.
Bean, a 5-foot-11 forward, scored the first six points of the game, but the Royalettes hung in and trailed just 11-9 after the first eight minutes.
Johnson, who led all scorers with 18 points, set the tone in starting the second with a 3-pointer from the top of the key. She and Holmes combined for 12 of the Pats’ points during the second eight minutes.
“We’ve got three outside shooters that can make a difference. We can extend a zone pretty well that way,” said Robinson.
“I like to shoot the 3s, but most of the time I usually pass it off. It depends on who’s hot that night,” Holmes added.
The Patriots got more aggressive themselves on the defensive end as the night wore on, with senior Katherine Bragg leading BC’s defensive effort with six steals.
“We hit the shots, but I think we started to get a little more aggressive, a little tougher on both ends,” said Bragg, one of six Patriot seniors.
Johnson’s perimeter shot from up top late in the second quarter gave Bangor Christian a 26-11 halftime lead that was never threatened, and the Pats shot a solid 5-for-12 from beyond the arc.
“Once it came into the post we kicked it back out so that the outside shooters would get some shots,” said Bean, who posted 12 points and 11 rebounds while Holmes finished with nine points.
The Patriots haven’t seen a great deal of zone defenses this winter, but certainly knew how to exploit that of Jonesport-Beals with smart passing and patient ball movement.
Bangor Christian’s defense diminished any hopes of a Royalettes rally early in the second half, holding the visitors without a field goal until Erin Crowley’s jumper from the left corner at the 2:27 mark.
With a talented blend of upperclassmen, the Patriots are making some noise in the Eastern Maine Class D ranks.
“Our goal has always been to make it to a game at the [Bangor] Auditorium,” Bean said.
Even though 1-6 Jonesport-Beals struggled from the field, the Royalettes did shoot solidly from the free-throw line (6-for-11).
Brandee Beal led Jonesport-Beals with five points.