All too often the same superlatives are used when describing a low scoring, defensive, game.
“Gritty,” “scrappy,” and “grind it out,” are just a few of these tired, and somewhat backhanded compliments.
But in Montini’s 50-21 win over Fenwick, the Broncos showed that an excellent defensive performance could not only be “gritty,” but borderline flashy as they held the Friars to a season low point total.
“We knew basically everything they were doing, we were well prepared.” said Montini head coach Jason Nichols. “I’ve been on them all year about not being prepared with scouting reports and how focused you need to be and today they stepped up in that regards.”
Coming off a trip to Florida, it took a couple of minutes for Montini to get into the game. Fenwick held their own during the opening quarter, keeping things to a one possession game while also earning slim leads.
It wasn’t until a Taylor Charles (eight points, five blocks) steal and basket at the end of the first quarter which really swung the momentum in the second quarter.
Montini only gave up three points and zero field goal in the second frame and never looked back. Although there were no standout performances for the Broncos, each of their nine rotation players found the scoring column in the first half alone.
“That’s how we are,” said Nichols. “We teach made the correct basketball play. Kids aren’t going to get 15, 16, shots but they’re going to win more games.”
From that point on it was all Montini. Besides their blemishes at the free throw line, the Broncos were firing on all cylinders and were well prepared for anything Fenwick threw at them.
“Our kids did a good job of recognizing driving lanes and getting to the basket,” said Nichols. “We didn’t do a great job of finishing or hitting free throws so we left the door open and we had to come out and make a run after the half. If that game gets to 10, anything can happen.”
They also limited the talented front court duo of Elise Heneghan and Audrey Hinrichs to just 11 points combined, and found ways to limit their touches.
The Broncos continued to add to their lead throughout the second half, until it finally settled upon the 50-21 scoreline.
“We’re playing the best teams and we’re close to being really good,” concluded Nichols. “We have some weaknesses we know we have to work on internally, but we and the kids are addressing them.”
Fenwick will look to bounce back in their next game against Taft, while Montini will look to keep things rolling against De La Salle.