Girls basketball: Unfazed by injuriesRosemount won its first two games of the season last week against Tartan and Johnson
By: Brian Hall, Rosemount Town Pages
When the Rosemount girls basketball team lost its top returning scorer and rebounder in Elaine Warner and its point guard in Laura Bodurtha, it appeared the Irish would need time to gel.
For a team without a lot of returning varsity experience, there would be some needed development time.
“No doubt about it,” Rosemount coach Sam McDonald said. “We’ve got some people in brand new spots. Some of them haven’t played much yet in the basketball careers.”
The expected development time received a boost last week when the Irish won two games. After opening the season with two losses in the Hamline tournament, Rosemount beat Tartan, 66-61, in double overtime and followed it up with a 76-42 win against St. Paul Johnson.
“We played very well on both nights,” McDonald said. “I thought Laura Dennis did a great job playing the forward position. She really stepped up and has done a lot more than we anticipated. I don’t think we would have seen this from a lot of these players without the injury situations. They’ve really stepped up in place of some players.”
Bodurtha’s return bolstered the lineup against St. Paul Johnson. But the emergence of Dennis and Brooke Stevens and the scoring of Rachel Hoeppner have led to the improvement of the Irish. Stevens filled in while Bodurtha missed time. With Bodurtha back at point guard, Stevens adds another ball handler on the floor for McDonald.
“Laura’s just calm and smooth with the basketball,” McDonald said. “She’s a strong ball handler. There aren’t a lot of stats to measure, but when you put someone in there who can handle the press and is a good ball handler, its stands out. Sometimes it takes just one pass out of the press to get the right shot, even if it’s the second or third pass that gets the assist. But with Laura there and with Brooke having that experience and doing a great job, now we have two of those type players on the court and it goes a long way to handling multiple defenses.”
With Bodurtha and Stevens on the court, Rosemount was able to jump out quickly against St. Paul Johnson. The Irish led 56-16 at halftime and held strong in the second half.
Hoeppner scored 24 points. Stevens added 16 points and seven assists. Hannah Halterman finished with 10 points.
Laura Dennis had six points, 14 rebounds and three blocks.
“Against St. Paul, we played really well right from the get-go,” McDonald said. “My challenge to them pregame was they needed to be ready to go and I thought they played really well.”
Rosemount led Tartan early, but had to go to double overtime to record the victory. The Irish outscored the Titans 10-5 in the second overtime period.
“Overall it was frustrating because we didn’t play our best game, but I was proud in the end that they figured out a way to get the win,” McDonald said. “They kept grinding and kept playing, kept rebounding. You’re not going to be at your best every night, so you have to find a way to keep playing and grind out wins.”
Hoeppner scored 26 points, while Stevens added 19 points.