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Second quarter dooms Lansdale Catholic in loss to Neumann-Goretti

LANSDALE >> Lansdale Catholic fell to 0-6 Friday night when it dropped a Philadelphia Catholic League Red Division matchup against Neumann-Goretti, 65-44, at Lansdale Catholic High School.

The Crusaders played the Saints close for three quarters, but a 22-4 deficit in the second quarter sent them to halftime trailing, 35-16, and the outcome was never in doubt the rest of the way.

Sophomore Gabby Casey turned steals into layups through contact on back-to-back possessions late in the first quarter. She completed the three-point play the first time and the second, despite missing the free throw, gave LC its only lead of the game, 12-11. Neumann-Goretti scored to end the quarter and take a 13-12 lead into the second.

The Saints (5-4) dominated the second quarter. They scored the first seven points of the frame and made nine field goals, four of which were three-pointers, to just one by LC while the Crusaders turned the ball over five times.

“We had some optimism because we were in the bonus but we didn’t actually take advantage of that until I think there was 4:22 left in the quarter,” LC coach Eric Gidney said. “That was the first time we got to the line. Obviously they won it, 22-4. We just didn’t have that individual that could step in and stop the bleeding for us. To have more than half the quarter go by without getting to the line when we were already in the bonus – that’s a missed opportunity for us. Everything that was going well in that first quarter – we stopped attacking the rim, we didn’t seem wise in our shot selection, things like that.”

Outside of the second quarter, Neumann-Goretti outscored Lansdale Catholic 43-40.

This was the second time these two teams faced in five days. Last Sunday the Saints won, 69-37, but Gidney doesn’t see a moral victory in losing by a smaller deficit.

“I personally have never been one for moral victories if you will,” he said. “I think we learned from this. (Neumann-Goretti is) a team of some very good  players and very good role players … Even some of the things that we learned in this game were not necessarily consequential to the outcome in terms of the score, but just seeing how a team like that distributed it well, how they all played defense together, how they all knew their roles and embraced their roles. The moral victory – I’ll let the girls decide whether that matters to them. I think for us we just played better. Even like the West Catholic game, even like the game against Wood – we had moments where we show we can be competitive, but then our youth and our lack of experience and some of our mental miscues rear their ugly head and we have quarters where we get outscored 22-4.”

Casey did a bit of everything for the Crusaders. She scored a game-high 24 points and grabbed a game-high 16 rebounds.

“She’s a kid that can pretty much do it all,” Gidney said. “She’s super athletic, brings great energy, tremendous leader. For a 10th grader to be one of our captains – that’s not just a title. She truly embraces that leadership role.

“Teams key on her and she’s still putting up those numbers, which is unbelievable. She does just about everything for us.”

Casey started on last year’s team that was still alive in the PIAA state quarterfinals when the COVID-19 pandemic prematurely ended the season. This year’s team is much younger and still finding its way after six games.

“We’re still wildly young,” Gidney said, “starting a junior, three sophomores and a freshman. It’s a big change from what it was last year. We went from being really experienced and a win away from being in the final four for a state title to COVID comes and everything else. We’re looking for improvements and moments of brilliance and opportunities to learn and grow. That second quarter, Goretti definitely gave us moments to learn and grow.”

Olivia Bochella added nine points for Lansdale Catholic on three three-pointers and Lauren Edwards had seven.

Neumann-Goretti 65, Lansdale Catholic 44
Neumann-Goretti 13 22 16 14 – 65

Lansdale Catholic 12 4 11 17 – 44
Neumann-Goretti: Hayes 10 0-0 22, Graham 0 0-0 0, Bermudez 6 0-0 16, Jordan 5 0-2 12, Price 4 0-1 8, Barnes 1 0-3 2, Ricks 1 0-0 3, Tyler 0 0-0 0, Murphy 0 0-0 0, Hickey 1 0-2 2. Total 28 0-8 65.
Lansdale Catholic: Saulino 0 0-0 0, Bochella 3 0-0 9, Quinn 1 0-0 2, Edwards 2 3-6 7, Casey 9 3-8 24, Ciccochelli 0 0-0 0, O’Connell 0 0-0 0, Clark 1 0-2 2, Kovacs 0 0-0 0. Total 16 8-14 44.
Three-point goals: NG: Hayes 2, Bermudez 4, Jordan 2, Ricks. LC: Bochella 3, Casey.

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