Game Time playoffs begin

BY NICK STEFFEN | JULY 17, 2014 5:00 AM

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No. 5 Pat McCool’s team 116, No. 4 Brian Joens’ team 65

Pat McCool’s team faced off against Joens’ in the first round of Game Time League playoffs Wednesday. Unfortunately for Joens’ squad, it suffered the loss of Iowa Hawkeye Claire Till along with five other players, and was forced to substitute Cammy Verducci, Amanda Bolo, and Niyma Heard, who all made their Game Time débuts Wednesday.

McCool’s team advanced largely thanks to Iowa players Whitney Jennings and Kali Peschel, as well as fantastic performances by Upper Iowa’s Olivia Meier and ex-UNI player K.K. Armstrong.

Jennings kept up her amazing performance on the court this week, becoming a blur whenever she drove the ball.

Peschel scored 33 points and had 21 rebounds on the night, and Meier scored 29 points and had 11 rebounds. Jennings scored 15 points and had 6 assists.

Although they advanced in the playoffs, Wednesday’s game was a bit of a bittersweet victory for McCool. 

“We played a team that was missing a bunch of players, which was a shame, but it’s nice to move on,” McCool said. “I actually think tonight playing a passport team helped us a bit; we played very unselfishly, and we tried different things on defense, which we will have to do next week.”

No. 3 Joe Johnston’s team 91, No. 6 Clark Anderson’s team 75

Johnston’s team advanced after a very physical game with Anderson’s team.

After securing a lead early on, Johnston’s team worked on defense, primarily trying to stop Iowa’s Sam Logic.

Johnston’s Iowa combination of Kathryn Reynolds and Bethany Doolittle proved to be powerful contenders in the playoffs. Doolittle scored 23 points and had 10 rebounds, while Reynolds scored 15 points and had 7 assists.

Reynolds and Logic went head to head on both sides of the ball the entire night. Offensively, Reynolds’ squad passed the ball well, while Logic’s team struggled to capitalize on both sides of the ball.

“It’s always fun to play against [Logic] because she’s such a big competitor; she makes everybody she plays against better,” Reynolds said. “It’s always a good challenge and really fun to get to go up against a player like her.”

Johnston was very proud of his team’s defense against Logic. He said his main defensive strategy was to get the ball out of her hands.

“I think we played as well as we could play, we defended really well. I was really proud of the defense; obviously, everything was geared at stopping [Logic]. We didn’t stop her, but I think we slowed her down a little bit,” he said. “Our players I thought played really well, they played under control, they passed the ball great like they always do, and of course [Doolittle] was fantastic.”

No. 1 Brendan Unkrich’s team 85, No. 2 Randy Larson’s team 74

The top two teams in the Game Time League fought it out in an exhibition because both the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds received a first-round bye. Iowa’s Ally Disterhoft returned after last week’s absence in a big way, scoring 42 points and getting 10 rebounds.

Iowa’s Melissa Dixon and ex-UNI player Jacqui Kalin scored 19 points each on the night.

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