Girls’ hoops recap: Andover foils Orioles fast-break efforts in upset girls’ basketball win

Andover upset Northwest Suburban Conference favorite Osseo 74-63 to improve to 2-3 overall in front of the home crowd on Youth Night Dec. 14.

In what’s been an up-and-down start to the season for Andover in which it has been held to 37 points and less than 50 points three times, Saturday’s Northwest Suburban Conference win goes a long way to establishing some confidence in what is an experienced group.

Andover’s Olivia Graham, left, tries to shoot over the outstretched arm of an Osseo player during the Huskies 74-63 home win Dec. 14. Andover knocked off the No. 8-ranked Orioles for its second win of the season and followed that with a 67-42 win at Coon Rapids, Dec. 18.Photo by Bill Jones

Andover’s Olivia Graham, left, tries to shoot over the outstretched arm of an Osseo player during the Huskies 74-63 home win Dec. 14. Andover knocked off the No. 8-ranked Orioles for its second win of the season and followed that with a 67-42 win at Coon Rapids, Dec. 18.Photo by Bill Jones

Andover’s Rachel Scott, right, drives into the lane during the Huskies 74-63 home win Dec. 14. Andover knocked off the No. 8-ranked Orioles for its second win of the season and followed that with a 67-42 win at Coon Rapids, Dec. 18.Photo by Bill Jones

Andover’s Rachel Scott, right, drives into the lane during the Huskies 74-63 home win Dec. 14. Andover knocked off the No. 8-ranked Orioles for its second win of the season and followed that with a 67-42 win at Coon Rapids, Dec. 18.Photo by Bill Jones

The Huskies jumped to a 42-34 lead at the half and kept that advantage throughout the second half.

While Osseo’s Janay Morton had a game-high 19 points, Huskies senior Olivia Graham pulled down 12 rebounds and guard Katie Yoder had six assists while making 12-of-14 free throws.

Andover coach Ray Brodeur pointed to Osseo’s ability to pressure teams into turnovers and quick shots.

“I thought we did a good job of breaking their pressure and not turning the ball over,” he said.

The Huskies showed patience in the half-court offense to find the open shot in rhythm, Brodeur said.

Andover shot 40 percent from the field and 70 percent from the free throw line, while turning the ball over 15 times.

Brodeur’s goal for the team is to shoot above 35 percent with less than 15 turnovers and shoot 80 percent from the line. “If we do that, we can compete in every game,” he said.

Andover has reached that shooting percentage half the time, but won and lost a couple close games. Against Maple Grove, Andover shot above 40 percent, but the Crimson made three points down the stretch to pull out the win.

On the defensive end of the court, Andover made the switch from man-to-man to more of a half-court trap against the Orioles. “It seemed to keep them off balance and slowed them down,” Brodeur said. “They like to get out and run and by switching the defenses, it slowed down their pace which helped us in transition.”

Legacy Christian
Legacy improved to 3-4 overall after an overwhelming 56-27 win over Pine City Dec. 15. The non-conference win was part of the Homecoming festivities at Legacy Christian Academy as the boys’ team completed the basketball double-header. Lions Lexi Weddle led the way with 17 points as the team outscored Pine City 35-12 in the second half.

Legacy Christian Academy’s Emily Kirby, right, looks for an opening to make a shot during the Lions 57-26 win against Pine City on Homecoming Night, Dec. 15. Kirby had nine points as the Lions improved to 2-2. Legacy won for the second time in a row after a 62-19 win over FAIR Dec. 18.  Photo by Bill Jones

Legacy Christian Academy’s Emily Kirby, right, looks for an opening to make a shot during the Lions 57-26 win against Pine City on Homecoming Night, Dec. 15. Kirby had nine points as the Lions improved to 2-2. Legacy won for the second time in a row after a 62-19 win over FAIR Dec. 18. Photo by Bill Jones

Legacy Christian Academy’s Lexi Weddle, middle, tries to sky a shot over the arms of a Pine City player during the Lions 57-26 win against Pine City on Homecoming Night, Dec. 15. Weddle had a game-high 17 points. Legacy won for the second time in a row after a 62-19 win over FAIR Dec. 18.  Photo by Bill Jones

Legacy Christian Academy’s Lexi Weddle, middle, tries to sky a shot over the arms of a Pine City player during the Lions 57-26 win against Pine City on Homecoming Night, Dec. 15. Weddle had a game-high 17 points. Legacy won for the second time in a row after a 62-19 win over FAIR Dec. 18. Photo by Bill Jones

Anoka
After a 2-0 start, the Tornadoes returned to earth and are 3-3 after a 61-48 loss to Elk River Dec. 14. Anoka couldn’t make up for a 30-19 halftime deficit in the Northwest Suburban Conference loss.

Coon Rapids overpowers Blaine
Coon Rapids’ Maegan McKernon had a game high 12 points as the Cardinals improved its record to 3-3 after winning back-to-back games.

Coon Rapids began the week with a 67-48 home win against St. Francis before doing much of the same two nights later against Blaine in a 58-39 victory Dec. 14. Meanwhile, the Bengals continued to struggle to find scoring and dropped to 0-7, losing by an average of 26.7 points.

Spring Lake Park
The Panthers added a 68-56 North Suburban Conference win at Totino-Grace Dec. 14. The conference opening win gives Spring Lake Park consecutive games for the first time this season to improve its record to 3-3.

Breanna Semanko led Spring Lake Park in scoring with 19 points in each game including a 59-31 win at Blaine.

St. Francis
After topping Princeton 83-78 Dec. 8, the Saints have struggled to find the right mix of scoring and defense losing consecutive games, including a 67-48 loss at Coon Rapids before a 66-56 loss to North Branch Dec. 14 in the North Suburban Conference opener.

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