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Lady Warriors Fall To Rutgers Prep In Somerset County Championship

vs. Rutgers Prep09Coach Audrey Taylor could see the tension in the faces of her Lady Warriors as they stood court side before the Feb. 28 Somerset County championship game against Rutgers Prep.

The team had been in this position each of the previous three years and had come up empty. Now, they were playing for a county championship on their home court.

“(It was) the anxiety they brought on the court from the beginning,” Taylor said. “Right before they go out for the tip, I say to them, ‘ladies, do me one favor, take one great big breath.’ And they all just took a deep breath, and you could see it.”

“There was a lot of pressure that they put on themselves,” Taylor said. “They know how bad they wanted it, they know how bad the fans wanted it.”

Whether it was the Lady Warriors’ anxiety or a super-motivated Rutgers Prep team – they were 0-2 against Franklin this season – Franklin once again came up short in the championship game, falling to the Argonauts 52-46.

Rutgers Prep wasted no time capitalizing on Franklin’s inability to score early. More than five minutes had elapsed before the Lady Warriors got on the board. At the end of the first quarter, Rutgers Prep lead 18-6.

Franklin managed to outscore Rutgers Prep in the second quarter, but it was a hollow victory with the Argonauts building a 33-22 lead by halftime.

Franklin outscored Rutgers Prep 11-9, but once again, the margin was too slim to make much of a dent in the Argonauts lead. Franklin was down 42-33 leading into the fourth quarter.

Two quick baskets at the start of the fourth quarter had the Franklin fans buzzing, but it was short-lived. Franklin outscored Rutgers for the third straight quarter, 13-10, but still ended up dropping the game, 52-46.

In the end, Franklin’s inability to deny Rutgers Prep second shots and its early cold shooting led to the defeat, Taylor said.

“Overall, we fought,” she said. “We lost on the boards. Second chance opportunities really hurt us. The ball wasn’t dropping, we weren’t getting the ball in the basket. We weren’t converting on any turnovers.”

“It was a great effort by Rutgers Prep, but for us, we fell short on the things we do well; moving the ball, sharing the ball, we fell a little short on that today,” Taylor said.

The team’s next challenge comes at home on March 2, when the Lady Warriors face Edison in the first round of the state championships.

Taylor said there’s no mystery about how the team must prepare for that game.

“Emotionally, we just have to regroup, there’s not much more that we can do,” she said.

2-28-15 Lady Warriors vs. Rutgers Prep

 

 

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