After a tight first half with Bishop Ireton clinging to a 23-17 advantage, the Cardinals tied the screws down defensively to pull away to a 24-point win on the road Thursday in Washington 50-26.
Things got off to a rocky start for the Cardinals. The Tigers blew out to a 10-0 lead in the game’s opening minutes before Bishop Ireton got up off the canvass and began fighting back. Mara Celis-Copelloti hit the first two of her game high 18 points to start a 12-0 Ireton run that gave them a slim lead after one quarter. Slowly the Cardinals worked the lead larger with free throws and a stiffening defense.
Wilson scored the f irst 4 points of the second half to draw to 23-21 before Celis-Copelotti hit a jumper and senior Camille Weber drained a three pointer to get the visitors some breathing room. Celis-Copelotti made a pair of “3 balls” and suddenly the lead ballooned to 37-23. Issabelle Kendall drilled a 3 to open the final period and the rout was on. Kendall scored again on a jump shot the Cardinals rode home with their 4th win of the season.
The Cardinals shot a season high 40% from the field, including 54% of their three point attempts while holding Wilson to 34% shooting. Julia O’Brien, Taylor Gallahan, and Weber added 6 a piece for Ireton, while Kendall had 5, Heather Pearson 3, and Alex Stipano and Illeanna Gutierrez each had a free throw in the book.
The defense was the story as much as the offense, Ireton held the Tigers to 9 second half points, including 3 in the game’s final quarter. Suarez led the host Tigers with 12 points for the evening.
Bishop Ireton continues a busy weekend with yet another road trip to Georgetown Visitation, a tough spot for the Cardinals over the last few years. After visiting the Cubs, the team hosts Bishop Sullivan in their home opener Saturday, tipoff set for 2:30pm in Fr Godley Gym.