Another Magical defensive effort for Mount St. Joseph in District 1-AAAA 1st round

SPRINGFIELD — Defense wins championships.

It may be a cliche, but that is the route that Mount St. Joseph is taking. It worked in the Magic’s league championship game last week and it worked Saturday afternoon in the first round of the District One AAAA tournament against Methacton to the tune of a 45-31 victory. The Magic (22-2) defense gave Methacton fits all game. They forced turnovers throughout, held the Warriors to single digits in each quarter and didn’t allow any easy baskets.

“Defense has been our constant through the entire season,’ MSJ head coach John Miller said. “We feel, for the most part, that we’re winning this year because of our defense.’

“We pride ourselves on our defense,’ senior guard Mary Kate Ulasewicz said. “We say that defense wins us games. We all just try to play hard, tough defense and pressure them in the backcourt and just make it tough for them.’

Ulasewicz is at the head of the Mount’s defense.

“I’m playing their point guard,’ Ulasewicz said. “Usually if you get the point guard flustered, you get the whole team flustered.’

“(Ulasewicz) harasses the ball in the backcourt,’ Miller added. “She just, not necessarily steals, but just makes the opposing player work hard and then it sets the tone for us because then our other four players can work hard to deny the basketball.’

When Mount St. Joseph needed offense, it typically came from junior guard Caitlyn Cunningham. She scored a game-high 18 points and was the only player to score in every quarter.

“Caitlyn is hard to defend even though she’s not large of stature,’ Miller said of the 5-foot-5 Cunningham. “She’s hard to defend because she can hit the three, she can pull up and hit the mid-range jumper and she can take the ball very strong to the basket. If you can do all three of those offensive moves with the ball, you’re difficult to defend.’

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