The loss was the Indians first regular season league defeat since January of 2006, and ended a string of 21-straight TCL wins.
The key to the Eagles win was a balanced attack as coach Rhett Boyd utilized his entire bench.
“We preach team,” Boyd said. “Fought, Strall and Adamski could start for nearly any team in the area. Heck, they could start for us. We must give a team effort to win and tonight we did just that.”
Eight different Notre Dame players lit up the scoreboard with junior Ashley Okonta leading the way with 14 points. Jasmine Blanton was also in double figures with 10 while all-city guard Patrice Lalor and Dominque Pryor each added 9.
“We didn't play great defense, and we didn't execute on offense, We got Natasha Howard in foul trouble, our guards were letting people go by them too easy, and then we didn't box out,” Waite coach Manny May said. “We let them have second and third shots.”
The surprisingly easy Eagle victory began to develop midway through the second quarter. Prior to that the game was a close affair.
The home team Indians jumped out to their biggest lead of the game at 14-8 but the Eagles surged back before the end of the quarter to tie the game 16-16.
In the opening seconds of the second quarter, Okonta scored to give the Eagles their first lead at 18-16, and after several ties, the game’s key moment occurred when Waite’s all-city forward, sophomore Natasha Howard received her second foul at the 6:15 mark of the second quarter. May replaced Howard with freshmen Shanice McNeal but the Eagles utilized Howard’s absence to their advantage. Over the final six minutes of the second quarter, the Eagles outscored the Indians, 15-6, to take a 33-22 lead at the half.
The second half saw the Eagles successfully protect their lead.
The Indians tried desperately to get themselves back into the contest but the Eagles’ depth allowed them to keep fresh personnel on the court. May tried several different approaches to try to ignite his team including a full court zone press and inserting both of his six footers, Howard and McNeal in the line-up at the same time, but the Eagles would not falter. The Indians were able to pull within seven points late in the third quarter but could come no closer as the Eagles regrouped and pulled away in the fourth.
The Indians were led by senior guards Keaira Marsenburg and Kenya Middlebrooks with 15 and 12 points, respectively. Howard added 11.