RIPON — Practice makes perfect.
Ruth Waters credited the shooting drill at the Ripon High girls varsity hoop practices for her outstanding free-throw shooting exhibit Friday against Lathrop.
She connected 12 straight from the foul line in the Indians’ 63-34 non-league victory over Lathrop High.
Waters had a game-high 24 points along with eight rebounds while spearheading the Ripon attack.
“Ruth has good instincts,” said Indians coach George Contente. “She can score. She plays great defense. And she does a good job of seeing the court.”
Ripon (3-0) was coming off back-to-back games.
“I didn’t mind it,” Waters said. “It’s OK every now and then.
“But I wouldn’t want to (play back-to-back games) all the time.”
Lathrop (0-2) played much better than what the final score indicated.
The Spartans found ways of breaking the Indians’ pressure defense.
“We just couldn’t convert on our baskets,” Lathrop coach Ed Fang said.
Jazlyn Simon and Loreal Taylor presented some matchup problems.
Celina DeSantis opened the game by nailing a 3 while Simon pulled up for a jumper to give Lathrop the early 6-2 edge.
Ripon then went on an 18-2 run, including 13 unanswered points in the second period. Abbie Waters had a put-back shot while Tia Sidtikun twice converted loose balls into baskets. She also scored on a steal.
Down 20-9, Lathrop came back on a pair of field goals by Simons and put-back shot by Erica Sanchez.
The Spartans pulled to within five points of the lead on Jasmine Calix’s drive to the hoop at the start of the second half.
But then Ruth Waters put together a free-throw shooting clinic, hitting 8 of 8 from the line in the third period.
The Indians were also successful in running their pick and roll, with Waters finding Haylee Fannin on the drive to the hoop and Fannin setting up Mariah Cardenas’ layup.
Waters opened the fourth period by converting on a three-point basket. Fannin then added a pair of field goals. She along with Kelsey Alexander and, of course, Waters, hit free throws to put Ripon up by 20.
Fannin finished with 10 and Sidtikun had 12 points and 10 rebounds.
Simon led Lathrop with 12 points. DeSantis finished with six.
Lathrop will get a weeklong break before hosting West High on Dec. 13.
Ripon, meanwhile, will host Beyer on Tuesday.
Lathrop 45, Ripon 39
Taylor Conley and Jamie Metcalfe scored 16 and 10 points, respectively, to lead the Spartans past the Indians.
Jenessa Alejandro, who had seven, was also recognized for her defense.