By GARY DOVE
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
In a preseason interview earlier this week, new Mount View girls’ basketball coach Harold Smith spoke of his desire to see his team play an aggressive match-up zone defense this season.
The veteran coach got his wish last night, in the Lady Knights’ season opener, as Mount View kept the visiting Montcalm Lady Generals out of their offensive routine to come away with a 53-15 win.
The View held an 8-0 advantage before Montcalm was able to negotiate its first shot attempt against the swarming defense, with the Lady Generals unable to connect from the floor until the 4:34 mark of the second, when they found themselves in a 23-0 hole.
“I told them (MV players) our whole defense is designed to not give anyone a clear look at the bucket, and they moved pretty well,” assessed Coach Smith.
“I’m proud of the girls for the first game…Overall, I’m proud of them,” he continued.
Junior Keisha Johnson led the Knights’ offense with 17 points, followed by 13 from Kaitlyn Gillespie, a freshman who knocked down three treys in the middle two quarters, coming off the bench.
Smith was able to give extensive playing time to all eleven of his players, with eight finding the scoring column.
Heather Nicewander and Emily Rose knocked down four points apiece for the 0-2 Lady Generals.
New head coach Cindy Havens analyzed, “We’re young and inexperienced. I saw some positive things out of them. Ninety percent of the time, I had three or four freshmen on the floor…They (Mount View) played a very aggressive defense, and that’s a little hard for us right now.”
Johnson and senior Gezelle Brown scored six first quarter points each to lead the Lady View to a 16-0 advantage after the initial frame.
Gillespie tossed in consecutive treys from the left wing in the second, as the lead expanded to 31-7 at the break.
Rose’s turnaround jumper from the foul line got Montcalm on the board with 4:34 showing in the second.
Gillespie continued her hot hand in the third, knocking down another three-ball, tossing in five points in the third, while Johnso, followed with four.
Montcalm will host Fayetteville on Tuesday, while the Lady Knights hit the road to face Independence.
Brenna Tyree 0 0-2 0, Heather Nicewander 1 1-2 4, Hannah Johnson 0 2-2 2, Allison Blevins 1 0-0 3, Hannah Alexander 1 0-0 2, Emily Rose 2 0-0 4. Totals 5 3-6 15.
MOUNT VIEW (1-0)
Tamia Joyce 1 0-0 2, Keisha Johnson 6 4-4 17, Jasmine Lash 3 0-1 7, Victoria Bright 1 0-0 2, Gezelle Brown 3 2-4 8, Destiny Robertson 0 0-2 0, Chantel Vineyard 1 0-0 2, Keisha Swanson 1 0-0 2, Kaitlyn Gillespie 5 0-0 13. Totals 21 6-11 53.
Montcalm.............................0 7 1 7 — 15
Mount View.........................16 15 14 8 — 53
Three Point Goals: M 2 (Nicewander, Blevins); MV 5 (Gillespie 3, K. Johnson 1, Lash 1).