Margaretville girls split pair in week's basketball action

By Julia Green
Margaretville 39, Windham 29
The Margaretville girls improved to 7-3 overall after a convincing 39-29 win at Windham last week Tuesday.
The Blue Devils were led by Erica Faulkner, who tallied all of her team-high 11 points in the second half, when Margaretville outscored Windham 30-16. Faulkner also had 13 rebounds for Margaretville.
“We came out kind of flat and we just weren’t ready to play the game, from what it looked like,” said Head Coach Kyle Holden. “Windham, to their credit, came out on their court ready to play ball.” The Blue Devils scored just four points in the first quarter and five in the second to trail 13-9 at halftime after an 11-point second quarter by Windham.
“Grace McGovern shot for three threes over the top of our defense,” Holden said of the second quarter. “She really had us backpedaling for a little bit; she scored nine of her 11 in that quarter.”
Casey Hubbell added 10 points for the Blue Devils, with eight of those coming in the Blue Devils’ 15-point fourth quarter, and Brittney Hull also had 10.
Margaretville turned up the heat on scoring in the second half; after a four-point first quarter and a five-point second quarter, the Blue Devils tallied 15 points each in the third and fourth quarters.
“We went in at halftime and we made it a point that we had to come out with better energy and control the boards and play our game, which the girls did,” Holden said. “We came out in third quarter and outscored them 15-5; we had four girls score in that quarter.”
Team rebounding was also key for the Blue Devils, with 13 from Faulkner, 10 from Hubbell, eight apiece by Hull and Caitlyn Roberts, and six from Amanda Drizis.

Roxbury 25, Andes 33
Mariah Ruff tallied 13 points and nine rebounds and Rachel Andrews added 10 points and 10 rebounds when the Andes girls played host to the visiting Roxbury Rockets on Tuesday night.
“The girls played well overall,” said Andes Head Coach Jeff Rhone. “It wasn’t a particularly well-played game by either team; it was scrappy stuff. But defensively they played pretty well and did well on the boards and did what they had to do to win.”
“We’ve been working on our defense a little bit,” he added. “In the zone they really did a nice job of moving with the ball. That was one thing I was pleased with in that game.”
Raven Sprague led the Rockets with 10 points and Jessica Utsler added five including a three-pointer for Roxbury.
“We did a good job rebounding and played pretty good defense,” said Roxbury Head Coach Tom Sherwood. “It was a game we had a chance of winning, but we just didn’t score – we didn’t shoot well. We did a good job rebounding and a good job on defense, but it’s been an ongoing problem with the team: we’ve had trouble scoring points. You hold a team to 30-something points, you should have a good chance at winning the game. It’s been a lot of the same things in all the games we’ve played. In games where we’ve been competitive we just haven’t scored enough points.”
Sherwood added that his team’s tendency to have a “bad quarter” hinders their ability to come out on top; Tuesday night, the Rockets tallied only two points in the third quarter, during which the Moun-taineers extended their lead to 13 points.
“If we could eliminate having a bad quarter, we probably could have won some games,” he said. “If we could avoid a bad quarter, we’ve got a chance to win some games, I think.”

Charlotte Valley 52, Margaretville 34
The Margaretville girls dropped a 52-34 decision to the top-ranked girls’ basketball team in New York State Thursday night, when they hosted the unbeaten Wildcats.
“Going in, we knew what we were up against,” said Holden. “We knew all the pressure was on them, so we just wanted to go out there and play as hard as we could. We set up four goals: take care of the ball, play as a unit, to knock down our foul shots and to handle their pressure.”
The Wildcats took an early lead with an 18-4 first quarter; the Blue Devils battled back in the second quarter, scoring 10 points to Charlotte Valley’s 11, but were in a 29-14 hole by halftime.
“It was really two girls that damaged us,” Holden said, referring to Charlotte Valley’s Sam Meyerhoff and Chelsea Haight, who combined for all 18 of the Wildcats’ first quarter points. “But the second quarter was 11-10, so we did a much better job getting into our offense, and again it was Sam who scored seven points in the second quarter, too.”
Erica Faulkner once again led the Blue Devils with 14 points and eight rebounds, while Brandi Balcom added 10 for Margaretville, who moved to 7-4 overall and 4-4 in the league.
The Blue Devils continued to battle, outscoring the Wildcats in the third quarter, and Holden acknowledged that a certain degree of intimidation undoubtedly contributed to his team’s falling behind early.
“They are the best team that we’ve faced this year,” he said. “They have the total package: the inside, outside, rebounding, pressure. But yeah, I think until we adjusted, that’s where they really jumped us.”
The Blue Devils also struggled to rebound, tallying only 17 defensive rebounds and 10 offensive for a total of 27; far below their consistent goal of 40 in a game and lacking for a team that counts on offensive rebounds to help with scoring.
“We’re not a great half-court offensive team,” Holden said. “We’re not bad, but we’re not like South Kortright or Davenport where they can really slow you down and pick you apart with their offense. Offensive rebounds are huge for us.”
The Margaretville girls play at Stamford today and Andes on Friday.

Andes 29, South Kortright 67
Mariah Ruff once again led the Mountaineers with 11 points and Rachel Andrews tallied eight in a rough night for the Andes girls, who fell to the host Rams at South Kortright on Thursday.
“They are a heck of a team,” Rhone said of South Kortright’s squad. “I underestimated how good they are. Their post players are so actively and defensively, their guards pressure us all night long. They’re just a good team all the way around.”
Andes went into the hole early, following a first quarter that saw the Rams tally 13 points to the Mountaineers’ two; South Kortright kept the heat on in the second quarter, when they scored 16 to Andes’ six to take a 29-8 halftime lead.
“I was very pleased at halftime, and we said to the girls, ‘This is a really good team, and you can go out in the second half and you’ve got a choice to make: we can play as hard as we can and learn from this, or we can lay down and die.’ I was as pleased with the way they came out and played hard in the second as I was with any game this season. We learned who we are, and they’re willing to fight with their backs against the wall.”
The Mountaineers had their best scoring stretch in the third quarter, posting 12 points and pressuring full-court, man-to-man; however, the Rams tallied 19 points apiece in the third and fourth quarters, never giving Andes the chance to get back in the ball game.
“I think our girls are always intimidated by teams like South Kortright and Davenport,” Rhone said. “It’s a mental approach, and I really don’t think it’s easy for them to overcome that. Going in, there were girls who felt intimidated, but when they got there, they played hard, and I’m really, really pleased.”

Downsville 50, Roxbury 33
The struggle continues for the Roxbury girls, who fell to 0-9 after a tough 50-33 loss to visiting Downsville on Thursday.
The Rockets were down by only a point after a competitive first quarter, in which Roxbury scored nine points to Downsville’s 10; however, a 14-4 second quarter gave the Eagles an 11-point lead going into halftime.
“They out-rebounded us and shot the ball very, very well, and those two things were key,” Sherwood said. “And again, we were down by the end of the first quarter and then got outscored by 10 points in the second quarter, and it seems like we get down in these games and we just can’t catch up.”
The Roxbury girls fought hard in the second half, tallying 11 points to Downsville’s 14 in the third quarter and another 11 to Downsville’ 12 in the final quarter, but it wasn’t enough to cut down the Eagles’ lead.
“We played them pretty evenly in the second half, it’s just that you cannot get down in these games,” Sherwood said. “You can play even with them, but if you’re down, it’s tough to battle back.”
Four three-pointers made up 12 of Downsville’s leading scorer Krista Baxter’s 14 points.
“They had four girls in double figures, I think,” Sherwood added. “They had balanced scoring. Yeah, they had some three-point shots, but they got some scoring from people on the inside, too, so they had a good inside-outside game against us.”
The Roxbury girls play host to visiting Gilboa on Wednesday night and Windham on Friday.
“I’d like to think we can be competitive in both of those games, but again, it’s going to come to if we can score some points,” Sherwood said.
Raven Sprague led the team in rebounds with eight, and Roxbury’s guards combined for 25 of the Rockets’ 33 points.