Defense leads CC-Crystal to win over Montabella

By Chip Burch • Last Updated 9:24 am on Monday, January 13, 2014

CARSON CITY — Two good defenses were on display in Carson City Friday night.

But the defense that won the game was the host Eagles, who held the Montabella Mustangs without a field goal in a 26-8 win.

Montabella’s only points came on 8-of-10 shooting from the free-throw line.

“We played a good defensive game. We held them (CC-Crystal) to 26,” Montabella coach Terry Larsen said. “I was very happy with our defense. Our offense never got on track. We tried several different sets against them. We couldn’t get it inside at all and they have a very smothering defense.”

CC-Crystal coach Larry Farmer agreed.

“I thought the story of the game was our defense,” he said. “They (Montabella) didn’t score a field goal and I don’t know how many times I’ve seen that. If you hold a team to eight points you’re going to win a lot of games.”

In fact, the Mustangs (4-3, 2-1) didn’t score a point at all in the first half, going down 15-0.

“We tried to set up some variations off of our offense to try to get us better looks” in the second half, Larsen said. “It actually did work. We got some good looks but we couldn’t get a shot to go down. I’ve never experienced anything like that before.”

The Eagles (6-1, 3-1) held leading scorers Taylor Smith and Sarah Miller to four points total, all from Smith.

“When you hold a good player like Miller, who averages 15 points a game, to zero points, I think it was a testament to the scouting reports,” Farmer said. “The girls executed the game plan greatly on the defensive end and took away a lot of the strengths they (Montabella) had.”

Meanwhile, Montabella was able to hold CC-Crystal’s leading scorer, Mikayla Duflo, to just eight points. That was tied for the team high with Mackenzie Geister.

“We got a freshman, Madison Cutler, who was on Duflo most of the night,” Larsen said. “Duflo is a lights-out three-point shooter. She stayed with her everywhere she went. She may have only got four shots off on Madison. Geister stepped up and did a good job of running the team when we took Duflo out.”

But Farmer said the his offense was stagnant because the Mustangs were ball hogs.

“There were some time of possession issues with that as well because they (Montabella) held the ball a lot in the first half,” Farmer said. “I think you don’t look at total points, it’s ratios. It’s how many times you execute and how many times they do.”

Both teams will have non-conference action coming up. Montabella hosts Ithaca Monday while the Eagles host Tri County.

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