XENIA — It often seemed as if Legacy Christian were shooting into a square basket, during Tuesday’s home girls varsity basketball contest with visiting Chaminade Julienne. Worse yet, CJ wouldn’t let the host Knights take many second tries, in a 47-36 Eagles win.
Chaminade Julienne (2-1) applied plenty of defensive pressure, and rarely allowed the Legacy Christian players to drive for an inside score. And when LCA (1-1) would loft a shot from outside, there was often a CJ player there under the basket to haul in the defensive rebound.
“We didn’t rebound so well in the first half, but we did a better job of that in the second half,” Eagles coach Randy Duff said. “We’re not a great offensive team, so we have to hang our hat on our defense.”
With the Eagles bench chanting “D-up!….. D-up!….. D-up!,” Chaminade Julienne’s defenders frustrated Legacy throughout the game, keeping them from getting any sort of a playing rhythm, while causing a dozen turnovers.
Three Knights players scored in the contest, with each reaching double figures. Kathleen Ahner and Emma Hess each finished with 13 points, while teammate Maddy Combs finished with 10.
“We thought we got shots that we’re normally pretty good at making,” Legacy Christian coach Mark Combs said. “But with their athleticism, and the way they defend and get after it, that certainly sped us up and forced us to hurry stuff. … They deserve the credit for the win.”
Unofficially, LCA hit 12 of 46 shots (26 percent) from the floor, while Chaminade Julienne was a little better at 15 for 45 (33 percent). The Knights converted on eight of their 12 free throws in the contest; CJ hit 13 of their 16 tries.
Senior Staci Greene led the Eagles in scoring with a game-best 16 points, while the Greater Catholic League Co-Ed scoring leader (14 points per game) Eve Monaghan, Jordyn Varise and Trineese Walker scored six points each.
The Eagles get back into GCL Coed play on Friday Nov. 29 when they head to Hamilton to take on Badin.
Tuesday’s game was the first home game of the season for Legacy Christian. The team had beaten 2019 Division III state runner up Waynesville on the road by a 55-39 score on Nov. 23. Hess had scored a team-best 27 points in the season opening win over Waynesville.
Combs chalked up Tuesday’s loss as a good learning moment for his team.
“We’re in the second game of a long year. We’ve gotta learn from this, and we’ve gotta find better ways for us to execute and score with the basketball,” he said. “I didn’t think our defense was too bad. They’ve got some pretty good offensive players. … We just were offensively challenged tonight and we struggled tonight.
“And when that happens, you’re going to struggle in scoring.”
The Knights will host Franklin Monroe for their next game at noon on Saturday, Nov. 30.
Contact John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123.