Poor first quarter dooms Mary Louis in loss

Mary Louis' Kadijah Dickson tries to grab the ball. Photo by Elizabeth Graham
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Mary Louis Coach JoAnn Arbitello has grown far too familiar with her team performing poorly for one quarter each game. It’s become a trend she isn’t happy with.

“We play well three out of four quarters normally, we just can’t get over the hump and play well in a four-quarter game,” she said.

On Monday night, that quarter was the first. The Hilltoppers went down by 12 and fell to host Bishop Loughlin by the same margin, 70-58, in CHSAA Brooklyn/Queens girls’ basketball.

Although the game was closer than the score showed due to late fourth-quarter free throws, the overall feeling by Arbitello and her players was disappointment. Several times in the second half it appeared Mary Louis was on the verge of making a comeback, only to have it stall because of turnovers.

The Hilltoppers (9-9, 2-7) got as close as three points with just 2:19 remaining in the game after a Kadijah Dickson three-point play. That momentum was quickly taken away, however, when Mary Louis committed a turnover on the next possession. The Lions (8-8, 4-4) came down and scored and never looked back.

“Our offense, as much as we’ve been working on it at practices, was erratic and we weren’t coming down and being patient with the basketball and setting up,” Arbitello said.

Dickson, a sophomore, and junior guard Simone Hobdy both scored 20 points for Mary Louis. Senior guard Emily Arias added 10 points, but outside of these three players the offense was lacking all night, which had Dickson looking for a better effort from her teammates.

“They were putting in more effort, they were outstrategizing us,” she said of Loughlin. “They just played harder.”

The Mary Louis defense also struggled throughout the game, allowing Loughlin stars Imani Tate and Jasmine Alston to score 29 and 23 points respectively. TMLA expected a better effort all around in a game it felt it could win.

“It hurts,” Dickson said. “They’re a good team, but I think we’re a good team, too. It just hurts.”

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