3rd Quarter Achilles Heel

bball_craz_26

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I will admit, I have tried being positive and looking for things to cheer on with this year's team. Yes this has been a messed up season with covid, game changes, and all that and I understand that. However, the third quarter issues confuse me and I can't come up with a reason why it happens nearly ever single game!

The Gophers have won two...yes TWO 3rd quarters this season. They outscored Eastern Illinois 22-13 in the very first game of the year, and at Nebraska they won it 20-19.

They also, like last night, tend to get buried in that quarter. Losing some 3rd quarters by scores of 30-13, 26-14, 17-7, 28-8 and more. What is happening at halftime? Yes other teams make adjustments, but we suddenly stop shooting, or look completely flat with no energy or effort. Are they running on treadmills the entire break at half. I won't pile on like some do and blame Whalen and act like she is the worst coach ever, but something has to be figured out. Look at games we lost by 12, 13 have were outscored by 15+ in the third.

Anyone else see something I'm missing of what could be happening coming out of halftime?
 
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MNGirlsHoops

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its a fair observation. I'm sure the coaches are breaking down play by play to see where it goes wrong as well as time-outs. Its hard to tell if other teams are making adjustments and it is throwing off a young team or its something else.
With young teams you have to learn when your being punched you punch back and that isn't happening right now.
 

Katogopher

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Great topic, I’m curious to hear from other coaches or with coaching experience what they think or experienced. The lack on getting back on defense seems to be the most concerning considering their tendency of TO after halftime Speaking as a fan with an untrained eye. I am a Whalen fan and hope they can figure this out.
 

Ignatius L Hoops

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Yesterday we obviously didn't have anyone to match-up with Czinano or Clark. In the Iowa Daily Czinano talked about how the Hawkeyes came out for the third quarter:


Providing the spark for the Hawkeyes’ third-quarter fireworks was Minnesota guard Sarah Scalia, who hit a buzzer-beating 3-point shot at the end of the second quarter to cut the Golden Gophers’ deficit to six at haltime.

“Our talk was just like ‘Yeah, we should’ve been able to defend that, but we’re not going to let that one possession dictate how we come out in the second half,’” junior center Monika Czinano said. “So, I think everything was just keep pushing at them, and I think for the whole game our goal was to just keep going, keep pushing, keep not letting up no matter how much we were up, and I think we did a really good job of that.”


The Hawkeyes kept pushing. Remember how the third quarter ended. Meyer rebounded looked up and saw Warnock racing past the Gopher D-long pass for a layup. Then we tossed a lazy inbounder that was intercepted for a buzzer beating three.

Iowa's first points of the game set the tone. Warnock rebounded the ball passed to Clark on the mid court sideline. Clark relayed it to Czinano who had out run every Gopher except Powell down the court.

There's, to borrow a baseball term, too much defensive indifference.
 

bbwannabe

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So would it ever make sense to have a different defense coming out of half time? I’m assuming other coaches and teams have figured out at halftime how to punch us down. If those layup bunnies were made....what a difference that would be.
 

GringaGopher

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Our 3rd quarter woes have been extremely frustrating. In addition to the above mentioned issues we seem to lack court awareness and not having another experienced guard like Hubbard really showed yesterday. Also, we do not bring enough defensive intensity and energy like we saw IO do against us. I'm sure Whalen and our other assistants are preaching this but it requires a leader on the court and we don't consistently see this with Powell. I love her overall game but she does disappear sometimes and so far Smith has not been able to step up her game. We have seen the team improve overall so hoping they can start making adjustments to avoid these lapses.
 

Hrothgar

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I will admit, I have tried being positive and looking for things to cheer on with this year's team. Yes this has been a messed up season with covid, game changes, and all that and I understand that. However, the third quarter issues confuse me and I can't come up with a reason why it happens nearly ever single game!

The Gophers have won two...yes TWO 3rd quarters this season. They outscored Eastern Illinois 22-13 in the very first game of the year, and at Nebraska they won it 20-19.

They also, like last night, tend to get buried in that quarter. Losing some 3rd quarters by scores of 30-13, 26-14, 17-7, 28-8 and more. What is happening at halftime? Yes other teams make adjustments, but we suddenly stop shooting, or look completely flat with no energy or effort. Are they running on treadmills the entire break at half. I won't pile on like some do and blame Whalen and act like she is the worst coach ever, but something has to be figured out. Look at games we lost by 12, 13 have were outscored by 15+ in the third.

Anyone else see something I'm missing of what could be happening coming out of halftime?
It seemed to me that the 2nd-half downturn started in the previous season at PSU. The Gophers were riding a winning crest going into lowly PSU & blew them away in the 1st half, but they blew a huge lead after halftime and had to hang on and win that game. It seemed almost as if something unpublicized happened at halftime at PSU that the team never recovered from. Following that, the Gophers took on OSU before a large home crowd but folded in the 2nd half there, too. Not long after that Destiny Pitts was gone and the rest seems to be history repeating itself....
 

whalenfan

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I think the biggest thing is we are a really inconsistent team, 3rd quarters have been bad lately but we've had some really bad 1st 2nd and 4th quarters this year as well. We are a guard oriented team and when they arent playing well we struggle. We dont have the depth to pick up the slack when Scalia Powell Hubbard and Sissoko arent playing well or one of them is out. Coaches always talk about getting old and staying old and well we are working on getting old and these are the growing pains that go with it. We need our starters to be more consistent and we need our bench to keep developing so they can come in and pick up the slack when someone isnt playing well. We just arent there yet.
 
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MNGirlsHoops

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I think the biggest thing is we are a really inconsistent team, 3rd quarters have been bad lately but we've had some really bad 1st 2nd and 4th quarters this year as well. We are a guard oriented team and when they arent playing well we struggle. We dont have the depth to pick up the slack when Scalia Powell Hubbard and Sissoko arent playing well or one of them is out. Coaches always talk about getting old and staying old and well we are working on getting old and these are the growing pains that go with it. We need our starters to be more consistent and we need our bench to keep developing so they can come in and pick up the slack when someone isnt playing well. We just arent there yet.
I still think Kadi is the wildcard as we move forward just because she can impact the game on both ends and we will see flashes of 'wow' and then we will see a young player still learning the game. I would be curious what her youth basketball looked like in France..
I want to see a better commitment and effort on the defensive end from a key player or two (no need to mention names) if we are going to take the next step
 

Aesop70

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I'll put more of the responsibility on the coaches. If we are succeeding in the 1st half our opponents coaches seem to make good adjustments at halftime and our girls look sucker punched until we finally figure out how to adapt in the 4th quarter. But if we're down 15-20 pts going into the 4th, then it's too late.
 
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