Mark Spigarelli has some advice to any fan who thought the Blue Springs South Jaguars poured it on his Wildcats in a 59-21 Suburban Big Seven loss at South Thursday night.
“We need to get better, it’s that simple,” Spigarelli said after Brad Oyler’s Jaguars used a 37-15 halftime advantage en route to the mercy clock win. “Brad’s kids are about to play the biggest games of the season, and they came out and pressed us (forcing 17 turnovers) and played hard.
“And that’s exactly what I would have done if I’d been in his shoes. He played his reserves in the fourth quarter and got some kids off his bench some experience. He’s a class act and I wish him well the rest of the season.”
The Jaguars did little wrong in the impressive conference win against their crosstown rival.
“We wanted to play a consistent game,” Oyler said after his Jaguars improved to 17-6 overall and 7-3 in conference play. “I thought we did a nice job rebounding and the girls played with intensity – which is sometimes hard to do when a game gets out of hand.
“Mark’s kids played hard, and he’s playing a lot of underclassmen who are getting some valuable experience this season.”
It was the usual suspects for the Jaguars. Tiffany Davenport, who surpassed 1,000 career points last week, led the charge with 15 points in just over a half of action.
Naia Tauai added 11 points, 11 boards and five blocks to dominate in the paint at both ends of the court.
“We all know what to expect from Tiffany and Naia night after night,” Oyler said. “They are such great team players, they get all their teammates involved in the game. And tonight, Naia was a real presence on both ends of the court.
“And Tiff ... was Tiff.”
Kaylee Connors came off the bench and scored seven points in the first quarter as the Jaguars ran off to a 22-6 lead.
Tauai scored nine of her 11 points in the second quarter and Davenport lit up the Wildcats for eight points in the third quarter, before joining the rest of the starters on the bench for the final period.
“They’re our biggest rival, so we always get excited about playing Blue Springs,” Davenport said. “They’re a little bit down this year, but you want to win every time you play. District starts soon, and we want to be playing our best basketball right now.”
Added Tauai: “We like to play as a team. Tiff is going to find the open man and if I get the ball inside, I’ll kick it back outside. None of us care about stats, just winning.”
Senior Camryn Swanson was the lone Wildcat in double figures as she finished the night with 12 points. Blue Springs fell to 6-17 and 2-10.