Weatherly tops Panther Valley
bob ford/times news Weatherly's Courtney Lovett (right) and Panther Valley's Kailee Smith battle for control of the ball as the Wreckers' Alexis Hartz moves in to help.
High school basketball games are 32 minutes long, but an outcome can be settled in much less time.
Monday night, Weatherly broke open a close game in the final four minutes to capture a 52-38 win over Panther Valley.
Jamey Mikovich's basket and free throw kept Panther Valley within eight points with a half of a quarter to go. Then, while the Panthers were committing 10 turnovers, Weatherly scored eight of the game's final 10 points to lock up the victory.
In the first quarter, Mikovich drilled a three pointer at the five minute mark to tie the game at 4-4. Alexis Hartz's baseline basket gave the Wreckers an 11-4 lead three minutes later, but then the Panthers' six point run made it a one point deficit. Tea Heister scored from the floor and Hertz sank two free throws in the final 40 seconds of the first quarter to give Weatherly a five point cushion.
Kelly Parker and Dominique Adamczyk combined for 10 of Weatherly's 14 second quarter points to increase their lead to 11 at the half.
"We've been there before," said Weatherly coach Will Frantz in reference to his team having a lead at the break. "I told our team we would rotate more players in the second half to try to keep up our full court energy and inside passing game."
At first, the strategy didn't work. Panther Valley, utilizing an fullcourt press after it scored a basket, put together an 8-2 run to start the third period. With 2:10 to go in the quarter, Madison Blasko scored two of her six points in the period to bring the Panthers within two at 33-31. But the last minute proved to be Panther Valley's nemesis once again as the Wreckers scored the final six points on baskets by Hester, Parker, and Shelby Berger, who came off the bench to add four of her eight key points for the night.
The Panthers made one more roar before succumbing.
At the 4:10 mark, Mikovich's three-point play kept it close at 44-36, but then Parker scored a lay up off a steal, Jessica Polchin hit a short jump shot before Adamczyk and Courtney Lovett finished the 8-2 run to ice the game for Weatherly.
"In almost every game this year we have played well in spots," said Panther Valley coach Brad Hurley. "Then we get outworked like we did tonight in the fourth. Plus, we didn't take care of the ball down the stretch due to their trapping defense.
"It's frustrating. We can't seem to play consistently for all four quarters. But give Weatherly credit. They made the shots at the end when they really counted.
The Wreckers (3-10) were led by Heister's 12 points, followed by Adamczyk who added 11. Blasko paced the Panthers (6-11) with a game high 15 points. Mikovich added 13.
"I thought our kids just didn't want to lose this game," said Frantz. "After we came out flat to start the third, I called a timeout and told them to go back to our pressure defense. 'Go crazy,' I said and don't worry about fouling.'"
Blasko 7-1-2-15, Vance 2-0-0-4, Jacobs 1-0-0-2, Smith 2-0-0-4, Mikovich 5-2-5-13, Marouchoc 0-0-0-0, Weaver 0-0-0-0, Picht 0-0-0-0, Corby 0-0-0-0, M. Markovich 0-0-0-0, C. Markovich 0-0-0-0. TOTALS: 17-3-7-38.
Heister 5-1-2-12, Parker 3-2-2-9, Adamczyk 5-0-0-11, Lovett 3-0-0-6, Polchin 1-0-2-2, Berger 3-2-2-8, A. Hartz 1-2-4-4, Strizak 0-0-0-0, Isom 0-0-0-0, S. Hartz 0-0-0-0, Gillott 0-0-0-0, Wallish 0-0-2-0. TOTALS: 21- 7-14-52.
Panther Vy. 10 8 13 7 - 38
Weatherly 15 14 10 13 - 52
Three-pointers: PV- Mikovich 1; W - Heister 1, Parker 1, Adamczyk 1.