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Archbishop Wood brings energy in PIAA-5A first-round win over Berks Catholic

PHILADELPHIA >> Archbishop Wood’s state playoff opener was its first game since the District 12 championship against Mastery Charter North on Feb. 28 and its second game since the Philadelphia Catholic League championship on Feb. 20.

After seven days off and only one game in 15 days, the Vikings wanted to open the PIAA-5A tournament with energy and that’s exactly what they did.

(12-1) Archbishop Wood showed its dominance in a 70-37 win over (3-7) Berks Catholic Saturday afternoon at Archbishop Ryan High School.

The Vikings took full control of the game in the second quarter. Berks Catholic trimmed a double-digit deficit to six, 24-18, early in the frame. Wood responded with a 16-4 run to take a 40-22 lead and they went into the locker room ahead, 42-24. Ryanne Allen scored seven points in the second, Izzy Larsen and Lindsay Tretter each had five and Brianna Bowen added four. The Vikings defense forced eight turnovers in the eight-minute period.

It was more of the same in the third. Allen scored nine points, Kaitlyn Orihel added six and the defense forced another seven turnovers. The Vikings led by 31, 63-32, after three.

“We wanted to bring pressure,” Wood coach Mike McDonald said. “We wanted to bring energy. We really wanted to come out and set a tone. We wanted to be the aggressor and pressure to see if they’re ready for it. It led to some fouls on us but it also led to some turnovers. It just gives us energy by getting up and guarding. That’s all we were trying to do and it worked out today.”

“We just had to come together as a team and share the ball,” Allen added on the middle two quarters, “knock down our shots like we know we can. We definitely stepped up on defense today. That’s what we were working on in practice leading up to this game. We just stuck to our gameplan.”

Wood forced 24 turnovers in the game and tied up the Saints a handful of times to cause jumpballs.

Allen scored a game-high 18 points, Orihel joined her in double figures with 16 and Baxter added eight.

Allen only scored two points in the first quarter but still made an impact. She drew four fouls in the quarter to help put the Vikings in the bonus before the end of the first. She was fouled two more times in the second. Wood was 10-for-14 from the free-throw line in the first half.

“I’m happy because I’m finally getting foul calls to start off with,” Allen said. “I was just trying to be aggressive on the boards as I have been a lot all season. I was just trying to do whatever I could to get the win.”

“We’ve been challenging (Allen),” McDonald said. “She’s a really good player. She’s going to play Division 1 big-time somewhere. We’ve been challenging her to go after it and do other things away from the basketball – rebound the basketball – and I thought today she was huge rebounding the ball. I don’t know how many she had but she had four offensive rebounds early. She got some defensive ones later, a couple more offensive. If she can continue that then she’s going to be the complete player. We might watch her on TV some day – that’s how special she could be.”

Wood will face (3-2) Twin Valley in the second round Wednesday at a site and time to be determined.

Archbishop Wood 70, Berks Catholic 37

Berks Catholic 7 17 8 5 – 37

Archbishop Wood 15 27 21 7 – 70

BC: Emkey 1 0-0 2, Kirwan 3 0-0 9, Schreiber 0 2-2 2, Painton 2 2-4 6, Reedy 3 0-0 6, Herb 1 0-0 3, Dabney 1 0-0 2, Holt 1 4-7 6, Gordos 0 0-0 0, Birmingham 0 1-2 1, Mirenda 0 0-0 0, Birmingham 0 0-0 0. Total 12 9-15 37.

AW: Larsen 1 3-4 5, Orihel 7 0-0 16, Allen 5 6-7 18, Bowen 2 2-2 6, Baxter 3 2-3 8, Fleming 0 0-0 0, Kiefer 2 1-2 5, Tretter 2 0-0 5, Morgan 2 0-0 5, Meredith 0 0-0 0, Finnegan 1 0-0 2, D’Alessio 0 0-0 0, McCloskey 0 0-0 0, Fleming 0 0-0 0, Klos 0 0-0 0. Total 25 14-18 70.

3-point goals: BC: Kirwan 3, Herb. AW: Orihel 2, Allen 2, Tretter, Morgan.

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