Lady Lancers hold on to top Wilmington
Neshannock (59) Vs. Wilmington (52)
Jan 12, 2012
 By Dan Irwin
New Castle News

Neshannock High had its transition game going early and looked like it was ready to pull away from Wilmington.

Then the rebounds stopped coming.

The Lady Lancers went on to take a beating on the boards in their nonleague clash with the Lady ’Hounds last night at Westminster College, but with Wilmington unable to capitalize on its second and third shots, Neshannock still had enough to hold on for a 59-52 win.

When the Lady Lancers (5-7) started running midway through the first quarter, they converted an 8-8 deadlock into a 17-12 advantage by quarter’s end. But when period two started, Neshannock managed to hit on just one of 11 shots and was outrebounded, 19-8. The result was that Wilmington (6-5) carried a 24-23 lead into the locker room.

“When you don’t rebound, you can’t transition,” said coach Luann Grybowski, whose team was outrebounded 49-34. “We were hammered on the boards, and that’s been the case most of the year. We’ve been outrebounded by everybody we’ve played, with the exception maybe of Quaker Valley and Shenango.”

For all its dominance of the glass, though, Wilmington couldn’t make much headway. The Lady ’Hounds were just 22 of 62 from the field, including 6 of 16 in the second quarter.

“We definitely dominated the boards in the second quarter — thankfully, because we sure didn’t in the first — but we could not make a bucket count,” Wilmington coach Brandy Sanford said. “Our shooting has been off for probably the last four games. We’ve had a few players do pretty well, but as a team, we’ve been kind of down in that area.

“We had an all-shooting practice yesterday. We’ve got to get out of the slump that we’re in.”

Neshannock, meanwhile, shook off its second-period doldrums when it returned from intermission and reeled off a 15-3 run to start the quarter. Madison McHale had six points during that span, and for the half, contributed 16 of her game-high 25.

“They played a lot of zone, and most teams play us man,” Grybowski said. “We haven’t seen a lot of that. Maddy McHale is usually pretty good from the perimeter, but because she was struggling, I put her in the post, and that 3-2 was so spread out she could have done anything she wanted once she got the ball in there.”

The Lady ’Hounds continued to battle back, though, and when Alanna Eliott — who had 19 points — put an offensive rebound up and in with 1:10 remaining, Neshannock’s lead was down to a single point, 51-50.

Marissa DeMatteo answered the call for the Lancers, though, with five straight points to round out her 17-point effort. Two free throws by Erin Warvell and one by McHale completed the scoring, while Wilmington managed only one more field goal from Carly Christofferson.

“We were down by six with 45 seconds left,” Sanford said, “and my girls were kind of playing on their heels, waiting for something to happen.

“Afterward I was telling them, you’ve got to make something happen.”
Nightly Roundup
Jan 12, 2012 Nightly Roundups
Game Scoreboard
Neshannock 17 6 21 15 0 59
Wilmington 12 12 9 19 0 52
Box Scores
Mackenzie Hiers 2 1-4 5
Carly Christofferson 5 0-0 10
Grace Gealy 3 0-0 6
Alanna Elliott 8 3-5 19
Tessa Sikora 1 0-0 2
Cassie Marett 1 2-2 4
Sarah Slonaker 2 2-5 6
Jamie Thompson 0 0-0 0.
Totals: 22 8-16 52.

Katie Burrelli 0 0-0 0
Marissa DeMatteo 7 1-2 17
Erin Warvell 1 2-2 5
Madison McHale 7 10-15 25
Tayler Grybowski 3 3-5 9
Alexandra Fischer 1 0-4 3.
Totals: 19 16-26-59.

WILMINGTON 12 12 9 19 — 52
NESHANNOCK 17 6 21 15 — 59

3-point goals — Neshannock 5 (DeMatteo 2, McHale 1, Fischer 1, Warvell 1).

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