Bombers press past rival BulldogsFor Barnum sophomore guard Cheyanne Johnson, it all starts with the press. Johnson and her teammates pressured neighboring host Carlton into a 48-34 Polar League defeat Monday, as the Bombers began the game with their 1-2-2 zone press en route to avenging an earlier loss to the rival Bulldogs.
By: Tyler Korby, Pine Journal
For Barnum sophomore guard Cheyanne Johnson, it all starts with the press.
Johnson and her teammates pressured neighboring host Carlton into a 48-34 Polar League defeat Monday, as the Bombers began the game with their 1-2-2 zone press en route to avenging an earlier loss to the rival Bulldogs.
“I feel our defense was the main factor,” said Johnson, who helped the Bombers turn Carlton giveaways into easy first-half baskets. “We play best when we push and play fast. It gets us going. It helps us with the momentum.”
Barnum (9-13) had all of the momentum early, darting to a 23-8 halftime advantage, mostly thanks to their aggressive style of play, according to Bombers first-year Coach Katie Moench.
“The girls feel they can play better when they play fast – I agree,” Moench said. “[Monday], the girls came out aggressive. But I didn’t have to say much to fire them up.”
That’s because the Bulldogs upended the Bombers 47-45 Jan. 3 in Barnum. After that game, Moench said her senior-less team struggled to take care of the ball and failed to pound it inside to veteran 6-foot-2 junior center Daron Mainville.
“Since then we’ve really been stressing to get the ball inside to Daron,” Moench said. “She’s a high-percentage shot – a head taller than most – and it’s tough to stop her.”
Monday, Mainville was tough to stop, scoring a game-leading 18 points, including 10 in the opening half, securing the paint and providing a go-to punch inside all evening.
Mainville credited her teammates for the victory.
“The beginning of the season was hard to get our chemistry going,” Mainville said. “But now, we’re playing better. And [at Carlton], we knew we were the better team.”
Emily Miletich added 11 points for Barnum, as six players in all combined for 21 field goals to Carlton’s nine.
The Bulldogs (7-10) have been beaten in their previous four contests, without a win in almost three full weeks.
Senior guards Tori Zime and Brooke Camps scored 13 and 11 points each to lead a late Carlton run that failed short.
Meanwhile, young Barnum continues to press forward.
“We first played Carlton and were still growing,” Johnson said. “Now we’re starting to get stuff together as a team. We’re learning how to play along with each other.”