Late heroics lifts MCS past Eagles

By John Bernhardt
With the game on the line and time running off the game clock, the Margaretville girls’ basketball team likes to see the ball in the hands of junior Tess Svoboda.
Svoboda hit a game-winning shot for the second time this year as the Blue Devils nipped Downsville, 40-39, on the Eagle’s court last week.

“My biggest regret was the fact we couldn’t put them away when we had the chance. We almost seemed flatfooted at times,” lamented Margaretville coach Kyle Holden when reflecting on the game. The Blue Devils carried a 32-26 lead into the final eight minutes before Down-sville’s Peanut Jennings caught fire. Jennings scored nine points down the stretch erasing Margaretville’s advantage and positioning the Eagles for a come-from-behind victory.

But, like she did in the championship game against Gilboa in the Margaretville Booster Club Tournament, Svoboda left Holden smiling. Behind by a point, 39-38, Svoboda hit a driving runner down the lane from 10-feet away at the end of an out-of-bounds play for the game-winner. Downsville had time on the clock for a final shot but the attempt rimmed the basket, and the Blue Devils went home with the victory.

Svoboda’s heroics almost didn’t happen. Leading 38-37 with under a minute to play, Margaretville’s pressing defense allowed Jennings to get free for a lay-up in the lane, and with 43 seconds to play, Downsville was in front, 39-38.

The Blue Devils struggled trying to get off a final shot and the ball was deflected out of bounds by Downsville with only 13 seconds left. Four seconds later Margaretville turned over the ball out-of-bounds to the Eagles.

The Blue Devils caught a huge break when a Downsville player stepped on the sideline making the inbounds pass and turned the ball back to Margaretville. The inbounds pass found Annette Hogan with Hogan shuffling a pass to Amy Filupeit and Filupeit spotting Svoboda for the winning score.
Filupeit had a huge first half scoring 11 of her game-high 15 points for Margaretville. Five Blue Devils scored in the third period when Margaretville temporarily pulled away from the Eagles.

Raeann Bond led the way during the surge with five points. Bond would score seven points and pull down 10 rebounds for Margaretville. Annette Hogan netted seven points, and Erin Filupeit grabbed 12 rebounds for the visitors.

The foul line proved to be a major obstacle for Margaretville throughout the contest. The Blue Devils only hit three of 15 attempts from the charity stripe. “We’ve had better nights from the line,” Holden mused with a wry smile.

Roxbury edges JCS
The Roxbury girls’ basketball team evened their record at 2-2 when they held off a fourth quarter Jefferson rally to down the Jay Hawks, 30-26 last Thursday. Leading 22-14 entering the final quarter, the Rockets’ lead had been reduced to 28-26 before Kennedy Faraci hit both ends of a one-on-one to put the Jay Hawks away.

The foul shots gave Faraci, a junior guard, a game-high 13 points in the contest. The Rockets used smaller contributions from five other girls to generate the necessary offense. Kendall Sprague added six points for Roxbury.

At the opposite end of the floor Elissa Starheim and Emily Wenner were almost the total offensive show for Jefferson. The JayHawk duo scored 22 of the visitor’s 26 points with Starheim netting 12. Wenner scored six of her points at the foul line.

Roxbury played a strong defensive game holding Jefferson to just 14 points over the first three periods before the JayHawks rallied down the stretch. The Rockets will play tonight in the second round of the Stamford Girls’ Basketball Tournament.