BANGOR — Emma Johnson has admittedly had a roller-coaster shooting year and has been patiently waiting for a breakout performance.
The Bangor Christian senior did so Tuesday night, leading three Patriots in double-figures with 23 points on 11-for-18 shooting as coach Phil Robinson’s club breezed to a 57-39 Eastern Maine Class D prelim win over Jonesport-Beals at Eastern Maine Community College.
The eighth-ranked Patriots (13-6) earned a rematch with top-ranked Washburn in a Monday 3:30 p.m. quarterfinal at the Bangor Auditorium.
Bangor Christian defeated the Beavers in the same round last winter.
No. 9 Jonesport-Beals concludes its season 8-11.
This matchup was never in doubt as the Patriots opened the game on a 13-2 run, with Johnson scoring five points and Whitney Holmes six more.
It was in the second period that Johnson accounted for most of her damage, torching Jonesport-Beals for eight points.
“We passed the ball, we made our shots. It paid off in the end,” said Johnson.
The Patriots’ red-hot shooting was on full display throughout the game, with Holmes finishing with 14 points and McKenzie Gibbs 12. The trio of Holmes, Johnson and Gibbs combined to shoot a robust 22 of 41 (53 percent) from the field.
Bangor Christian didn’t even attempt a free throw the entire contest.
“I guess I’ve been on and off this whole year, but I think by the end of the year I’ve worked more on my shots and stayed later after practice,” Johnson said. “I think that definitely helped. It obviously showed in this game.”
Perhaps lost in all this offensive prowess was the Patriots limiting the Royalettes to 14 of 53 shooting (26 percent) with a solid 2-3 zone.
But Bangor Christian wasn’t exactly happy with the fact Jonesport-Beals was 6-of-13 from 3-point range.
“I think we were more focused on the inside, because that’s what we’ve had to do all year is focus on the inside and we weren’t getting out there fast enough,” Johnson said.
Bangor Christian opened up a 20-point lead with a 14-0 run that expanded from the end of the second quarter and into the third, and the Royalettes got no closer than 14.
Junior Sam Martin was a force on the defensive end and on the backboards, as she rejected four shots and grabbed five offensive boards, while Johnson hauled in eight rebounds and Holmes had three steals.
Morgan Beal was Jonesport-Beals’ high scorer with 18 points while Jess MacLean contributed 11.
The Patriots feel they have the quarterfinal matchup they want against the Beavers because they are familiar with them.
“They’re going to be challenging. They’ve got a big girl inside, but we’ve just got to shut her down,” Johnson said.
Bangor Christian’s main drive this winter was to get back to the Auditorium, and the Patriots showed they can be a dangerous club, especially offensively.
“We’re pumped to go back we’re pumped to show what we’ve got,” Johnson said.