Coach wants ldquo quality wins rdquo

Lady Bulldogs crush Bishop Gibbons in Tuesday game

By Jordan J. Michael

GREEN ISLAND –– After a tough start to the season, which included a 33-point loss to Duanesburg on its home floor, the Berne-Knox-Westerlo girls’ basketball team got back to its winning ways on Tuesday, beating Bishop Gibbons by 24 points.

However, the 47-to-23 win in Green Island at the Heatly Holiday Hoops Tournament doesn’t have Head Coach Tom Galvin convinced he has a winning team, just yet. The Lady Knights, a Class B opponent, have a 0-8 record.

“Our wins are against teams that we should never lose to,” said Galvin after the game. The Bulldogs are 3-3. “We need some quality wins, so we still have a lot to accomplish.”

BKW started the game with a 9-to-1 lead and never let Bishop Gibbons get close, but the Lady Bulldogs did show some signs of inconsistency. Galvin told The Enterprise that he saw his players miss easy shots, not move their feet on defense, and turn the ball over.

“We have a lot of holes,” Galvin said. “It doesn’t matter where we play because we still haven’t solved the problems.”

Senior Marian Bates and sophomore Liz Harvey, who are BKW’s leading scorers, combined for 31 points on Tuesday, including eight three-pointers. “They gave us some big shots, like they should,” said Galvin. “We need them to be consistent scorers and to take this team on their backs.”

Harvey and Bates agreed with their coach, both nodding and smiling when asked if they lead the Bulldogs during game time. Both players also suggested that the rest of the team needs “a little boost.”

“When Marian and I score, it puts confidence into the rest of the team,” said Harvey, who banked a shot in from about half court as the buzzer sounded to end the third quarter. “We’re the rocks. The foundation.”

“Our shots come naturally, me and Liz,” Bates said. “It’s our job to score.”

After underachieving against Duanesburg, the Lady Bulldogs went to Canajoharie and lost another Western Athletic Conference game, and Harvey said that her team “paid for it” afterwards.

“We had two very hard practices after those two bad losses,” Harvey said. “Coach Galvin ran us pretty hard. We don’t want to have to do that again.”

It was a strange place to be for BKW, considering that it was in the Class C final last season and returned almost all of its players on its roster. The pressure of getting back to the Class C final had added up.

“Our program has established a winning bar and it affects the players, me, and the players that we had in the past,” said Galvin. “There’s pressure to get back to where we were before and I don’t think it can be ignored. This game is just as mental as it is physical.”

“Every time we fail, people look down, but it’s only a few games,” Bates said. “We’re just finding ourselves now and the consistency should come.”

During Tuesday night’s game at the start of the second quarter, Bates made two consecutive three-pointers after Harvey had made one of her own, putting the Bulldogs ahead, 23 to 5.

“Just finish the easy shots and relax,” said Harvey.

“Take a step back and keep it simple,” Bates said.

“We have the talent,” added Harvey. “Just got to use it.”

Galvin told The Enterprise that he’s used to having a “vocal leader,” a player who will speak for him. The middle of the season is approaching and Galvin doesn’t have that entity, but he suggested senior Sam Harvey, Liz’s older sister, because “she has the most mature approach.”

The Lady Bulldogs will be cautiously optimistic as it finds a way to get better. The team played Galway for the Holiday Hoops Tournament championship on Wednesday night after the Golden Eagles beat Healty by 22 points on Tuesday.

“The season is a marathon, not a spirit,” Galvin said. “We don’t raise quitters up in Berne. We’ll die trying.”

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