Thursday night, the North Putnam girls' basketball squad found that balance -- it was just late in doing it.
The Lady Cougars lost to Danville 56-40, and if they the Cougars had found their balance in the first quarter, the outcome might have been different.
The Cougars scored only two points in the first, while allowing the Lady Warriors to put up 14, putting themselves in a hole they couldn't get out.
"We struggled against the zone in that first quarter," Brothers said. "We don't see one like that very often and that was good practice for us."
North Putnam's offense finally ignited late in the second period, after Danville jumped out to a 21-2 lead. LeeAnn Davis got the Lady Cougars started when she hit one of her freebies after getting fouled inside the paint. After Davis scored her point, North Putnam went into a press defense, causing the Lady Warriors some trouble in getting the ball to their ace Sarah Elliot, who scored nine of Danville's first quarter points. Danville turned ball over allowing the Lady Cougars to go on a 11-4 run and close the half out trialing by only nine.
"Once we got them in the press, we were able to control the tempo of the game," Brothers said. "And we finally got back into the game, but when you are down 14-2, it's hard because you spend so much energy getting back in there."
North Putnam's press continued to cause problems for the Danville offense, causing it to turn the ball over seven times in the third period. Danville scored 13 points in the third period compared to the nine North Putnam scored. Eight of the Lady Warriors' points came from Elliot who proved to be a thorn in the Lady Cougars side for the remainder of the game.
The fourth quarter proved to be North Putnam's best, scoring 15 points and hitting the majority of it shots. The Lady Cougars' shot 35 percent form the field in the last quarter, compared to shooting 18 percent on 8-of-43 shooting in the first three quarters.
The fourth quarter turned out to Danville's best quarter also, as it scored 18 points, eight of which came from Elliot.
"When we started to miss shots early on, we became timid of our shooting instead of confident and that hurt us," Brothers said. "And they beat us on the outside with their perimeter shooting and when we went and guarded her (Elliot), they dumped it into the post. And when you do something like that you have to give up something either the outside on the post.
"We rolled the dice and it didn't happened for us tonight," Brothers said.
Megan Robinson led the Cougars offense with 16 points.
North Putnam is back in action next Friday when they play Greencastle in the County Tournament at South Putnam, with a start time still to be determined.
At North Putnam
North Putnam 2 14 9 15 -- 40
Danville 14 11 13 18 -- 56
North Putnam -- Stephenson 1 0-0 2, Frye 2 0-0 5, Pinney 1 1-2 3, Davis 0 1-2 1, Robinson 7 1-3, 16, Asbell 0 0-0 0, McGaughey 2 1-1 6. Totals -- 11 4-8 56.
Danville -- Brock 1 1-2 3, Trump 1 2-2 4, Stallsmith 1 0-0 2, Hall 2 0-0 4, Elliot 9 5-6 30, Kramer 4 1-3 9. Totals -- 18 9-13 56.
Next Game -- North Putnam is back next Friday when they play Greencastle in the County Tournament at South Putnam with a start time still to be determined.