Dew pours 23 points in Downingtown West win

DOWNINGTOWN — Maddie Dew took notice of the zone defense Upper Darby was giving Downingtown West from the opening tip.

Like Dew on many nights, the Whippets were able to play to their strength by swinging the ball around and finding easy baskets.

Overall, it was Downingtown West’s finest offensive performance of the season.

“When they play us in zone, I feel we are able to swing the ball around more,’ Dew said. “Once they put on the press, we were able to go down the court, move the ball and get some easy baskets. We’re been working hard on it.’

With the zone defense, Dew was able to find the open looks and get her shot off. Dew scored the game’s first six points and finished with a game-high 23 as Downingtown West never trailed in a 64-39 victory over Upper Darby in the opening round of the Downingtown West Holiday Jingle Monday night. The Whippets (5-3) will play Central Bucks South, a 51-29 winner over the Academy of Notre Dame, in the championship game tonight at 7:30 p.m. The Lady Royals will play Academy of Notre Dame in the consolation game at 6 p.m. While Dew was the high-scorer in the West offensive attack, she received plenty of help. Heather Camden aided Dew with 10 points and eight rebounds.

“I was just trying to focus on getting to the ball,’ Camden said. “That’s part of my job on this team to get the rebounds. I’m not one of the best shooters, but I got to play my role so we can function how we’re supposed to.’

“She was huge for us,’ Dew said. “It’s helpful for her to get those offensive rebounds because then we were able to get those second chance shots. She really helped us out tonight.’

Moving the ball worked well for West throughout the night as nine different players scored for the Whippets. West also scored over 14 points in every quarter in a consistent performance.

“We had our opportunites and did a better job moving the ball tonight,’ said West head coach Dave Johnson. “We’re always trying to work on things from previous games. Tonight was ball movement, rebounding and finishing plays. I think we took a step forward, but it’s going to be a daily process. We still got a ways to go.’

Despite Upper Darby playing from behind throughout the game, the Lady Royals were able to hang in the game thanks to the play of Emma Blewett and Shawni Dowd. Blewett scored 10 first-half points for Upper Darby to keep them at a 30-19 deficit heading into halftime.

After Dew hit a fast break layup to put West up 43-23 late in the third quarter, Dowd scored five unanswered points capped by a three-point play to finish an 8-0 run and put the Lady Royals within 43-31 with under a minute to go in the quarter.

Dew ended the rally with a layup at the buzzer to give West a 45-31 lead at the end of the third. From there, the Whippets pulled away once Upper Darby used a full-court press.

“Discipline has been one of the main things we focus on, especially on the press,’ Camden said. “That is what will gets us the extra points, which will eventually lead to wins.’

Holly Schnack finished with nine points for the Whippets while Hannah Supplee, Melena Paternoster and Meghan Graham each had five points in the win.

Dowd led Upper Darby with 13 points and Blewett added 10.

With another huge night for Dew, the Ches-Mont’s leading scorer at 19.4 points a game, she is within striking distance of 1,000 points for her career. Dew has 992 points heading into tonight’s championship game, just eight shy of achieving the milestone.

“Maddie is always worried about the next shot, not her last,’ Johnson said. “If she continues to do that and take advantage of what the defense gives to her, it’s huge for us. If the other girls continue to step up like they did tonight, we’ll grow as a team.’

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