BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
FORT MADISON – You know when you’re close to turning a corner on the season when you shoot a horrid 19% from the field and are still hanging around in the fourth quarter.
That was the game in a nutshell Saturday night, as Holy Trinity Catholic fell 56-43 to Mediapolis for the team’s seventh straight loss after starting the year 2-0.
“We just couldn’t buy a shot. We didn’t rotate on defense and got a little tired… got a little loose. But they get frustrated when they don’t make shots and then it builds from there,” Head Coach Tony Johnson said.
The Crusaders shot just 11 of 59 from the field including just a 4-of-30 performance in the second half regularly missing layups as confidence waned.
Despite the poor shooting, senior Maria Rauenbuehler gave the Crusaders their only lead in the third period. With 4:47 remaining she rained in a three from the left side to tie things up at 28.
A bucket by the Bulldogs’ Payton Bush put Mediapolis back up by two, but Rauenbuehler would hit again, this time from the right side to give HTC a 31-30 lead.
“I thought maybe when Maria got going and hit a couple threes that would get us going, but I think we were experiencing some fatigue from the back-to-back nights,” Johnson said.
The Crusaders are coming off a 50-45 tough loss to Central Lee Friday.
HTC would miss 22 of their next 23 shots from the field to allow the Bulldogs to pull away.
Junior Hallie Mohr, who had 29 to lead all scorers with 29, picked up her fourth foul in midway through the third period giving HTC a window to sneak back into the game, but the cold shooting wiped out the advantage.
No HTC player scored in double figures. Kassi Randolph led the way with eight points. Mary Kate Bendlage had seven, while Rauenbuehler, Raquel Schneider and Natalie Randolph each had six points. Kayla Box added five, Bailey Hellweg chipped in with three and Brooke Mueller had a bucket to round out the scoring for Holy Trinity (2-7).
The Crusaders travel to Notre Dame on Tuesday night in junior varsity/varsity boys/girls double header.