As the calendar turned to 2009, the Solvay girls basketball team possessed a 4-4 record, having climbed back to the .500 mark largely on Tessa Pucello's broad shoulders.
Hosting Holland Patent last Tuesday in a non-league game, Pucello took charge in the middle stages and pushed the Bearcats past the Golden Knights 56-40.
Solvay carried a modest 9-8 advantage to the second quarter, then turned to Pucello as she scored at will during a 19-12 push to halftime.
As the Bearcats outscored HP in each of the remaining two periods, Pucello continued to convert often. By game's end, she had 35 points, a new career mark that included 14 field goals and seven successful free throws.
Amanda Bigness helped with nine points, all on three 3-point shots, while Liz Martinez gained six points. For the Golden Knights, Allyson Freiermuth had 15 points and Lauren Marleau added 11 points.
After a week to rest, Solvay is home again this Wednesday to face Hannibal before going to Marcellus Friday night.