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Simmons powers Trojans over Jaguars

By Murray Gleffe, Correspondent


ASHWAUBENON-There is a reason many Division 1 college programs are looking at Jaddan Simmons already as a sophomore.

On Friday evening (Feb. 2), she scored 27 points, grabbed 8 rebounds, and had 4 steals enabling the Southwest Trojans to squeak out a 42-35 victory over the Ashwaubenon Jaguars in girls’ basketball action.

Hayden Kupsh led the Jaguars with 13 points and Megan Servais added 8 points with 11 rebounds.

Both teams connected on just 29% of their overall shots.

The Jaguars committed 23 turnovers to just 13 for the Trojans.

The Jaguars got off to a flying start behind an energetic student section donning their favorite sign of a player.

After Kupsh connected on a three from the right corner, the Jaguars took an early 10-2 lead with 12:15 left till halftime.

Trojan’s Head Coach Erin Barkley took a timeout and went immediately to a 2-3 zone.

It seemed to stunt the early momentum the Jaguars had, and the Trojans slowly crept back into the game behind the play of Simmons.

During an eight-minute stretch, seven of her nine points were second chance opportunities where the Jaguars could not pull down a defensive rebound.

“We gave up way too many offensive rebounds in the first 18 minutes,” said Jaguars Coach Nicky VanLaanen, about her teams play. “We just didn’t block out (Amber) Bouche and (Jahzmeen) Jackson and it hurt us a lot on the defensive side of things.”

It led to a Trojans 12-2 run and they suddenly had catapulted in front 14-12 with 1:38 left till the break.

During that frame, the Jaguars went 1-11 from the floor, gave up six offensive rebounds, and committed seven turnovers.

Just before the buzzer sounded, Simmons hit a 25-footer to give the Trojans a 17-12 lead at halftime.

“I thought we did a pretty good job early containing Simmons,” VanLaanen commented. “She is a tremendous talent and will get her point’s, but we made it too easy for her starting at the end of the first half and then carrying over to the second.”

A few minutes into the second half, Kally VanLaanen finally put a three-point field goal through for the Jaguars.

It was their first in almost nine minutes.

With the Trojans up 23-19 with 13:16 left in the game, and 11 fouls already whistled in half number two, both teams changed up defenses to combat foul trouble.

The Trojans extended their lead to seven on a 360 spin and finish by Simmons in the paint.

The Trojans length on defense was causing balls to be deflected on shots going up by the Jaguars.

Later in the half, Southwest went up double digits (38-28) after Bouche completed an up and under move, and a couple of free throws that were added by none other than Simmons.

The Jaguars called a time out and with just 2:50 remaining in the game, it was ‘make or break’ time for the home team.

VanLaanen started the spirited comeback when she sent an 18-footer through the net and was mauled on the shot. She completed the and 1.

The Jaguars then forced three consecutive turnovers with double and triple teams in the frontcourt ‘coffin corner’.

It led to two straight Kupsh outlet layups and suddenly the margin had been cut to three (38-35) with 1:33 still showing on the game-clock.

The Jaguars had a chance to tie when the Trojans missed a wide-open layup but threw the ball into the backcourt for an ‘over and back’ call on their ensuing offensive possession.

At that point, the Jaguars were forced to foul, and the Trojans hit four of six free throws down the stretch to ice the game.

“We’ve got an important week and a half of basketball coming up,” VanLaanen added. “We have three very good basketball teams on the schedule and everybody is playing for seeding right now. This is the time to be playing your best basketball with postseason just around the corner.”

The Jaguars fall to 11-8 overall and 9-6 in the FRCC with WIAA Regionals starting in just 18 days!

Next Up: The Jaguars will entertain De Pere Feb. 6 on Senior Night.

 

Green Bay Southwest/Ashwaubenon Box Score

 

GB Southwest             17,25, -42

Ashwaubenon             12,23, -35

 

Trojans Final Totals: FG’s 13-44, 3 PT FG’s 3-18, FT’s 13-24, Rebounds 31, Assists 3, Steals 12, Blocks 1, Turnovers 13, Personal Fouls 15

Simmons 27, Bouche 6, Hill 3, LePine 2, Jackson 2, Seals 2

 

Jaguars Final Totals: FG’s 11-37, 3 PT FG’s 5-16, FT’s 8-14, Rebounds 29, Assists 10, Steals 9, Blocks 1, Turnovers 23, Personal Fouls 21

Kupsh 13, Servais 8, Wright 6, VanLaanen 6, Schlader 2

 

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