Basketball coaches love to say that good defense creates offense. In other words, getting steals and forcing turnovers can lead to easy buckets on the other end.
For the 2013-14 edition of the Davis High girls team, it’s the other way around — the Lady Blue Devils’ great offense leads to a stifling defense.
And DHS’ defense was soul-crushing on Tuesday in a 55-11 smackdown of Armijo at The Cage.
After her team had 16 steals and held the Indians to just 4-of-40 shooting from the field, Karen Foster explained why it’s the Devil offense that allows the defense to be so tough:
“I have a high-powered offense,” said the third-year coach. “So if we can stop that other team, I feel very confident with our offense.”
On Tuesday, as Davis improved to 3-1 on the season, sophomore Rachael Allison led the way with 18 points, while junior Katie Grahn nailed a pair of 3-pointers to finish with nine points and sophomore Sophie Seng came off the bench to score seven. Emma Stenz added six to the Blue Devil cause.
Knowing she has so many weapons on that end of the floor — Allison, Stenz and Grahn, as well as junior Caitlin Mazzoleni (four points Tuesday to go with a team-high six rebounds) can all carry the team if needed — lets Foster focus hard on building that DHS defense.
“We pride ourselves on playing defense,” Foster said. “We work on it a lot, straight man-to-man … and a couple of different traps that we use. Emma in the middle, she starts it all because she is 6 feet tall so they have to pass up over her. Then we work for the deflection. A deflection is just as good as a steal.”
Against Armijo, sophomore point guard Anna Belenis, Grahn and Stenz each had three steals.
Stenz’s first theft led to a 3-pointer by Grahn to give the Lady Devils a 3-0 advantage. The Indians quickly made it 3-2, but a sweet dish from Belenis to Allison started a 10-0 run and the rout was on.
Armijo’s six-point first quarter was its highest scoring period, as the visitors managed just two points after halftime.
Davis’ reserves got a lot of court time, and players like Seng, Sarah Bloise (four points), Jamie Bautista (two) and Alaina King performed well.
“My bench did a good job,” Foster said.
The locals now get set for the three-day Oak Ridge Tournament, beginning Thursday with a 5:30 p.m. game against West Campus.
The two 3-1 teams have a common opponent as each squad saw Campolindo at DHS’ Dorothy Speck Memorial Tournament last weekend. That matchup represents West’s only loss, while the Devils topped Campolindo, 62-55.
“(At the tournament), we have to finish at the hoop and we have to rebound,” Foster said. “West Campus is tough so we have to rebound and get out and run.”
— Reach Chris Saur at email@example.com or 530-747-8049.