As the high school basketball season approaches its end, teams from all over the first state are in a mad scramble. While some are trying to lock down a spot in the playoffs fighting atop their respective conference, some are playing for their playoff lives from game to game.
Entering Tuesday’s contest against A.I. duPont (8-9), the Lady Jags had lost four games in a row after bolting to an 11-3 start. Also, Appo needed a win badly since two of those losses came to Concord and Charter School of Wilmington who currently sit atop the Flight A division of the Blue Hen Conference. Not to mention, with only three games remaining in the regular season, Appo has little time to improve their playoff chances.
In need of a big win, the Lady Jags responded early and often against the Tigers from A.I. duPont.
Appo railed off 22 first quarter points, led by senior Amber Cale who finished with a game-high 21 points helping lead the Lady Jags to a 48-33 win over A.I. duPont on Tuesday night.
The Appo offense went to work early, with good ball-movement and accurate attempts from the perimeter and inside the paint helped them take control early. Meanwhile, on the defense end, Appo was able to keep the A.I. offense off balance with heavy pressure leading to low-quality shots and few second-chance opportunities.
In the second quarter, both defenses buckled down as Appo and A.I. combined for just 5 total points in the quarter. Appo lead at the half, 24-10.
In the second half, the Appo offense returned to form thanks to a strong effort from Cale, Naiyanna Davis and Shirle Brown. Appo outscored A.I. by seven in the third to take a 39-17 lead into the final quarter. While Cale lead the Lady Jags in scoring on Tuesday, Davis finished with 13 and Brown contributed an important 10 points in the victory.
As the old basketball saying goes, “everyone makes a run,” the Tigers made one of their own in the fourth nearly doubling their output through three quarters. While the Lady Jags offense was kept in check in the final quarter, they were able to keep A.I. at a reasonable distance securing the victory.
The win for Appo is a big one, now at 11-7 the Lady Jags have just two games remaining in the regular season. On Thursday, February 13 Appo will travel to take on a tough Padua Academy (10-7) team who will enter play having won eight of their last 10 games. Then, the Lady Jags finish out their schedule hosting St. Georges Tech (4-12) on Saturday, February 15.