Though in different classes with different sets of foes, the Jamesville-DeWitt and Fayetteville-Manlius girls basketball teams both found themselves confronting the same issue during last weekend's 18th annual J-D Tip-off Tournament.
Namely, it was how anyone could Oswego. Neither the Hornets nor the Red Rams could do so, as the Buccaneers easily lay claim to the tournament title one year after J-D kept it from them in an overtime duel.
F-M, coming off an opening 54-51 win over Maine-Endwell, took the first jab at Oswego, which proved to be a feeble one as the Bucs parlayed a near-perfect start to a 62-44 victory over the Buccaneers.
All through the first quarter, F-M watched as Oswego used precision passes to set up back-door baskets and open 3-point shots, all of which seemed to go in.
At one point early in the second quarter, the Hornets were down 24-5, and while it would fight back within 10 (33-23) by halftime, the Bucs would take control again in the third quarter and not let go.
Playing all 32 minutes, the Hornets' Torie Lee finished with 17 points, while Emily Trapani added 12 points. No other F-M player had more than five points.
Oswego's Cari Reed proved unstoppable, with 25 points, five rebounds, three steals and two assists. And when she hit a free throw late in the first half, Reed (who is going to the University of New Hampshire next fall) passed 1,000 career points.
Saturday's final would pit Oswego against the hosts from J-D, who reached that point by handling Oneida 53-28 in the other opening-round affair for its third win in a row.
The Red Rams buried the Indians with a 35-11 first-half push, with Alyssa Gratien hitting four 3-pointers on her way to 20 points for the night. Jessica Kramer added 11 points.