The Marble Falls High School girls basketball team beat Wimberley 47-41 Dec. 6 thanks to players who took on bigger roles when foul trouble limited a couple of starters.
The win ends a four-game losing skid for the Lady Mustangs (9-5).
“It was a gritty game for both teams,” Marble Falls head coach John Berkman said. “They have a team that’s big. They’re not afraid to be physical and be in your face and just play hard-nosed basketball. We ended up with girls in foul trouble. We had to have kids who aren’t normally playing (lots of minutes) for us play or score for us.”
Three players sat during the first half with foul trouble. Add in that senior forward Emma Koziel was unavailable, and Marble Falls had to adjust and made it look easy thanks to the conditioning and experience of those who were able to play.
They included senior guard Mackenzie Farmer, senior forwards Emma Bindseil and Lilly Nesrsta, and sophomore forward Bethany Fry, who all committed to playing lock-down defense and limiting the TexAnns (15-2) to one shot per possession.
“Lilly came back from a broken nose to play point guard so that we could give some of the others a break,” the coach said. “I felt like that was a big piece of the puzzle for us. Mackenzie played a tough defensive game with the emphasis on blocking out. Mackenzie played a ton of minutes for us. A lot of times, she made sure her girl didn’t get the rebound. When you control the boards, you can control the game. Emma finding her place at the right time allows us to rotate correctly because she’s in the right place. ”
One player who’s used to logging minutes is senior guard Alyssa Berkman, who led the Lady Mustangs in scoring by dropping in 21 points. She also continues to be force on defense as evidenced by her 4 steals and 5 deflections. Junior center Lexie Edwards dropped in 7 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. Senior guard Tea Rodriguez scored 14 points.
“Alyssa had to play the entire game,” her dad and coach said. “She stepped up. She hit a bunch of free throws, hit a 3-pointer and drove to the bucket.”
The other positive was that no matter who was on the court, the Lady Mustangs’ defensive intensity didn’t drop.
“Without Tea on the floor, we sometimes struggled to get into a rhythm,” the coach said. “It was a two-point game at halftime. We kept it close. Tea did a great job of staying engaged. We held them to 17 points in the second half. That goes to our defense and our depth. They work hard on defense. Our defense made it difficult on that team. Things like that are why we can be good. The hard thing is to stay committed to defense all the time. That’s a huge deal. I thought we did a lot of things well. It was a good win for us.”
The Marble Falls varsity will play at Boerne High at 4:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, to allow the Lady Hounds to travel to support their football team.
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