Lady 'Canes fall to Franklin
Franklin (55) Vs. New Castle (42)
Dec 30, 2010
The New Castle High girls basketball team couldn’t put Franklin away last night.
The Lady ’Canes squandered an 11-point second-quarter lead and dropped a 55-42 decision in the first round of the Erie McDowell Christmas Tournament. It was New Castle’s first game since Dec. 16.
New Castle (3-2), ranked No. 2 in the WPIAL in Class AAA by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, fed off a switch to a zone defense and forged a 27-16 advantage.
“It worked out well for us for a while,” Lady ’Canes coach Jason Rankin said. “We stayed it in way too long, though. Franklin was able to go in at halftime and make adjustments.”
The Lady Knights (6-1) made eight 3-pointers, five of which came in the third quarter, when they outscored New Castle, 23-9, for a 45-38 margin.
“We didn’t get to the shooters,” Rankin said. “Once they got ahead you can’t play zone and we missed some good shots.
“We hadn’t played in two weeks and it showed a little bit.”
Christina Talbert netted a game-high 24 points for the Lady ’Canes, while Ja’Nia McPhatter contributed eight markers and 10 rebounds.
“Christina played really well,” Rankin said. “She was able to get to the basket and she defended well.”
Natalie Hager and Angelina Starr recorded 13 points each for Franklin.
“That’s the best team we’ll play all year,” Rankin said. “They’re going to contend for the western title.
“If we can make adjustments, we’ll be all right. Maybe down the road we can play them again.”
New Castle was playing its first game without its leading scorer Kaylynn Waters, who is out the rest of the season. Waters, averaging 27.3 points a game, has a partial tear to the anterior cruciate ligament, as well as a dislocated kneecap, which she suffered in a 62-29 win over Ellwood City Lincoln on Dec. 16.
The Lady ’Canes meet Erie McDowell at 6 p.m. today in the consolation game.