BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
WEST BURLINGTON – West Burlington Head Coach John Vandenberg’s girls basketball teams have a pesky habit of coming back to beat Holy Trinity in the fourth quarter.
Vandenberg, in his first year at West Burlington, lead the Lady Falcons back from a three-point deficit in the final period Tuesday night to down the Crusaders 60-52.
At Wapello last year, Vandenberg came back from a 20-point fourth quarter deficit at the Southeast Iowa Superconference Shootout to beat the Crusaders.
Holy Trinity lead by as much as five points in the third period when Emily Box hit a bucket inside and was fouled. She missed the free throw on the end. The Falcons, who took 46 free throw attempts in the game, missed four in a row including a lane violation after Box scored, but the Lady Falcons’ Jerri Price converted a bucket to make it 40-43 going into the last period.
West Burlington then went on an 11-1 run pressing the Crusaders and forcing turnovers. HTC only converted two buckets in the final quarter, but those were back-to-back three pointers by Sam Hoenig and Ashlynn Haas to Holy Trinity back within one point at 50-51.
The Falcons, who would only convert one bucket as well in the last 4 minutes, would go to the free-throw line 11 times over the span converting seven. With the West Burlington pressure forcing HTC into turnovers and keeping them out of their half-court offense, the Lady Falcons were able to hold on for the win.
Box led HTC with 14 points followed by Brett Schneider’s 12. Avery Hopper, Ashlynn Haas and Eryn Anderson all had six points, while Hoenig and Taylor Boeding each scored three and Madison Mohrfeld added two points.
Freshman Sydney Marlow led all scorers with 19 points for West Burlington.
Holy Trinity Head Coach Tony Johnson pointed to miscues and forcing the tempo of the game as the main reasons for the loss.
“We turned it over 36 times, they shot 46 free throws, we shot 11. There’s your game,” Johnson said.
Many of the Crusaders turnovers were on their own end of the court in transition.
“I like to control the tempo, but we were out of control tonight,” he said. “The biggest thing was 46 free throws. we just committed too many fouls. Hopefully, we’ll play a little better Friday and get home for once, it’s been a long time.”
Johnson said a scheduling hiccup resulted in WACO being played on the road instead of at home earlier this year, so the 2-3 Crusaders have spent the last five games on the road, but play Friday night at home against Cardinal of Eldon.
It’s been good for us,” he said. “One of the good things is we know we’ve got 10 or 11 at home now. Another good thing is that the conference is pretty evenly balanced and anyone can beat anyone else on any given night. We’re only five games in so I’m not panicking yet.”