Chatham Ousts Whippany Park in Morris County Opener
Saturday, February 2, 2013 • 11:27pm
CHATHAM, NJ - The Chatham girls' varsity basketball team scored 18 of the first 24 points in route to a 51-37 win over Whippany Park in the first round of the Morris County Tournament on Saturday at Chatham High School.
Chathan's Kendall Davies scored eight points in the first quarter, finishing with 13 points, all from the outside, while Grace Conroy racked up a team-high 14 points inside, leading Chatham into the second round of the tournament next week against Randolph.
"We're a dangerous team when Kendall is on from the outside and Grace is taking care of business inside," Chatham Head Coach Joe Gaba said.
The Cougars opened the game on a 9-0 run, before allowing a Whippany Park basket with three minutes remaining in the first quarter. Chatham responded with nine out of the next 11 points to lead 18-4 after one period.
In the second, the Cougar defense held the Wildcats to only three baskets, all from Courtney Simon, while the Chatham offense added five buckets, including three 3-pointers to go into half-time up 32-12.
"I thought we came out, especially in the first half, executing our defensive game plan," Gaba said.
After the intermission, the game hovered around a 20-point deficit until the fourth quarter when Whippany Park put a dent into Chatham's lead.
With 6:20 to play in the game, the Wildcats hit three consecutive 3-pointers in a two minute span to cut the Cougar lead to 43-33. Alana Dudley led the scoring surge for Whippany Park, converting on the last two deep balls.
Chatham's Natalie Washuta said the late scoring threat from the Wildcats did not effect the team's mindset in the final minutes.
"When she scored one or two, we didn't want to let it to effect us," Washuta said. "We kind of pretended like it didn't happen almost and just get right back to it."
The Cougars return to the floor on Monday when they face conference foe Mountain Lakes.