Dec 13, 2009 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Weather interfered with the Canastota girls basketball team’s schedule for the first time this winter, postponing last Wednesday’s scheduled home tilt with Madison.
So the Raiders were off until Friday night, when it played a key early-season showdown with fellow Center State Conference power Waterville and needed a big fourth-quarter rally to beat the Indians 41-38.
Right from the start, Waterville gave every indication that it would hand Canastota its first regular-season defeat since the 2007-08 season, holding the Raiders to a scant five points in the first quarter to go in front.
Through the next two periods, Canastota continued to struggle, and Waterville built its margin to 32-24. Sensing the trouble, Raider head coach Vinny Salamone switched up defenses – and those switches would pay off on both ends.
Not only did the Indians struggle for baskets, those mistakes led to the Raiders scoring on the other end, as a closing 17-6 spurt produced yet another win.
Shea Foster hit on 16 points, seven of them free throws, while Alicia Hibbard contributed 14 points. No other Raider had more than five points. Lindsey Wratten set the pace for Waterville and led both sides with 18 points.
For the Canastota boys team, the work began last week with a visit from Sherburne-Earlville that resulted in a 64-47 loss to the Marauders.
Following a close first quarter, S-E took charge in the second period, outscoring Canastota 21-6, a surge from which the Raiders could not recover despite playing on even terms the rest of the way. Billy Marsh had 14 points, while Sean Boise led the Marauders with 17 points.
Without any practice Wednesday to work on things, the Raiders returned Thursday to face Waterville — and maybe practice wasn’t needed, for Canastota went right back to the win column by rallying to beat the Indians 54-43.
In a rough first half, the Raiders struggled for baskets, as Waterville used a 20-7 surge in the second quarter to roar to a 27-14 halftime edge.
But it completely turned around in the third period, as Canastota started to hit those same shots and, by the time it ended, had forged a 33-33 tie. The Raiders kept it going, too, taking control in the fourth quarter and hitting the late free throws.
Marsh led that 40-16 second-half surge, as he earned 13 points. Right behind him, Josh Garcia picked up 12 points and Keith Casolare 11 points, while Greg Zupan had nine points.