Tamaqua's Christine Streisel has made a name for herself by her ability to throw a long metal spear about 150-feet.
However, last night, it was her ability to shoot an orange leather sphere about 20-feet that helped the Lady Raiders to a much-needed 50-43 Schuylkill League Division 1 victory over Blue Mountain (2-4, 0-2).
The former State champion and nationally-acclaimed javelin thrower buried a career-high five three-pointers and led the Lady Raiders (3-2, 1-1) with a season-high 23 points to snap a two-game losing streak, in which Tamaqua was outscored by a combined margin of 122-61.
"It was a big win that kind of got us off the proverbial 'schneid'," stated Tamaqua head coach Joe Berezwick. "On the inside, Amanda Solt did really well for us (especially early on), and then Christine did a lot of damage on the outside, which proved to be a winning combination."
Streisel's back-to-back treys got Tamaqua on the board and Solt rattled off eight straight points to stake the Lady Raiders to a 14-4 lead, against a rebuilding Blue Mountain squad that graduated all five starters from last year's playoff team.
Streisel and Solt combined to score 23 of Tamaqua's 29 first-half points, as the Lady Raiders held a 29-20 halftime lead.
"Christine's a shooter and she has the green light to shoot the ball when she has an open look," added Berezwick. "She's kind of been in a funk the past two games, but tonight she came right out of the gates and was knocking them down. She came out 'in the zone' and kept it going all game."
Streisel was 5-for-12 shooting from behind the arc and posted a double-double with 11 rebounds on the night.
Tamaqua then came out to start the second-half on a 10-2 run, which was keyed by Streisel's eight points. The Raiders led 39-22 midway through the third quarter, which was their largest lead of the game.
Twelve of Solt's 16 points came in the first half, as she also chipped in with nine rebounds.
"Tonight, I thought we did a much better job rebounding than we did the last two games," said Berezwick. "There were several opportunities that we looked like we were going to take over the game, but you have to give Blue Mountain credit for battling back and never giving up."
The Lady Eagles outscored Tamaqua 11-2 over the final 7:30 of the game to close the deficit to seven points, but it was too little, too late.
Tamaqua shot 22-for-60 from the floor, while Blue Mountain converted 17 of its 43 shot attempts. The Lady Raiders also held a 36-28 rebounding advantage and forced the Lady Eagles into 18 turnovers (compared to Tamaqua's 13 turnovers).
Olivia Shpakovsky was Blue Mountain's lone double-digit scorer with 17 points.
Blue Mountain also posted a 46-14 win in the JV game.
Kaledas 0-0-0-0, Foster 3-2-4-8, Woleschok 1-0-0-2, Lado 1-2-2-4, Shpakovsky 8-1-4-17, Ebling 0-0-0-0, Moyer 0-2-2-2, Fanelli 2-2-2-6, Bowen 2-0-0-4. TOTALS: 17-9-14-43.
Demetriades 0-0-0-0, Kabilko 1-0-0-2, M. Streisel 2-0-0-4, C. Streisel 9-0-0-23, V. Solt 2-0-0-5, A. Solt 8-0-1-16. TOTALS: 22-0-1-50.
Blue Mountain 10 10 12 11 - 43
Tamaqua 16 13 17 4 - 50
Three-Pointers: BM - None; T - C. Streisel 5, V. Solt 1.