On Friday night, Saint Peter’s, enjoying the first of two games at home, dropped a tough 52-48 decision to visiting Niagara. Sunday afternoon, Pat Coyle’s group rebounded with a 56-46 victory over Fairfield. Both games were accurate reminders, no matter the planning and adjustments during the 40 minutes, that you cannot overlook the simple process of putting the ball into the basket.
Saint Peter’s had the looks and opportunity against Niagara, but the shots didn’t fall. Niagara responded with the game on the line. Less than 48 hours later, the Peacocks responded by hitting those shots and making those crucial plays with the game on the line.
In conference play, it is said teams know each other so well that one can run the opposition offense nearly as well and precise as the opponent. There may be surprises, but ‘trick’ plays are not going to get it done, at least not on a consistent basis. What does it come down to? Execution. We think of execution as thoroughly running your offense and applying the defensive ‘scheme’. A major part of the execution, though, is the skill mentioned before: Putting the ball in the basket.
Following Friday’s setback, Saint Peter’s prepared the normal way. On Saturday, a film session going over the errors committed in the Niagara contest. Next, a walkthrough in preparation for Fairfield. In the end, the Peacocks got the message from Friday’s loss. They were ready for what Fairfield had to ‘throw at them’ on Sunday. Of utmost importance, Saint Peter’s shot the ball better on Sunday, a major reason for getting the conference weekend split.
Niagara on the defensive end against Saint Peter's:
Niagara coach Jada Pierce assesses her team's situation:
Saint Peter's in a postgame huddle:
Are you a soccer fan? Or more specifically, a Carli Lloyd fan? Courtside neighbor, and voice of Saint Peter's, Glenn Crooks, coached Carli at Rutgers:
Fairfield lining up during the national anthem on Sunday:
Fairfield on offense:
A break in the action, with Fairfield and officiating friend Gary Schimel in the background: