East County Sports

Patriots fight hard in loss to Dons

Haley Whitman looks for her shot against Cathedral Catholic. / Kendaris Moody

2021-22 EAST COUNTY PREP GIRLS BASKETBALL

CATHEDRAL CATHOLIC 78, CHRISTIAN 36

By Dave Dickens
EastCountySports.com

SAN DIEGO (1-4-2022) — When you are a team that faces some of the best teams in San Diego, you are a team that plays in the Western League, which just happens to include teams like the Cathedral Catholic Dons, Academy of Our Lady Of Peace, Canyon Hills, and Scripps Ranch.

The Lady Patriots are one of the teams that have the pleasure of playing these talented squads, year in and year out, which can make it tough to win the league each year, but on the other hand, can make you that much more competitive, and learn how to defeat these elite teams, and eventually learn to expose and exploit the weaknesses of these elite teams, creating more wins, not to mention create winning traditions, as Christian High head coach Vickie Carrington has achieved at Horizon and at Christian, by creating a belief in her system based on her philosophy and Christian High School’s, that the wins will come and they will come in the form of giving all glory to God.

Coach Carrington did it with her previous club, including phenomenal players that went on to continue playing at an elite level.

Players like Simone James, Zoe Nordling, Allie Carreon, Kristin Williams, and many others, that are current superstars in the making. That is why wins, losses, and scoreboard watching are not the platform that creates true winners. It starts with building up character, believing in one’s self, and in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. True fundamentals taught on and off the court.

The Lady Patriots gave it their all, but the Lady Dons proved to be too much to handle, as the host Lady Dons went on to get the win by quite a few points, 78-36.

“We fully have players with talent and the ability to compete to keep us in most games. That’s what happens when we play together, are composed, and are disciplined. Tonight, I feel like we played with zero energy, we did have energy and excitement going into the game, but our energy was zapped out way too soon. Cathedral has about eight players that can go on their bench, and although they have more experienced players, we could have done a better job competing with them all four quarters. Japonica (Melvin) and Hailey (Whitman), Amyaha (Walker), and Koko (Akridge) did some good things. I’m proud of their effort. Had we had more energy we could have played a lot better,” said Carrington.

“As for tonight, our fire and zest were not there, we looked tired and defeated way too early. Unfortunately, we were never able to pull out of that state, which was unfortunate because we have some good player match-ups, even though our current playing level isn’t as high as it will be. We will get there,” said Carrington.

“I showed how much I have improved, however, I do still have a lot to work on. For the next level, I know that I want to be able to make an impact, and to do so I will have to continue to improve my skill set, my leadership, and physical strength,” said Akridge.

“Knowing I had nothing to lose and, I playing with a lot of confidence. Because of this mindset, I believe I was able to play a good game. If I can continue to play with that mentality, I think I will be able to have success,” said Whitman.

“One thing I came away with from the game against Cathedral, was once I realized that the defense I was playing was keeping my opponent from scoring, it made my drives increasingly dangerous, even pushing the ball up the court really boosted my confidence because I started to believe in myself and became scared of no one on the court at all,” said Walker.

“I was going to keep my head up and continue to play hard, no matter what the score was. No matter how big the opposing player is, just attack as you would any other player, get them into foul trouble. I tried to attack as much as I could to draw fouls on my opponent. Even though the result was a loss, it was just a learning experience, and we will grow from it as a team.” said  Melvin.

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