Kramer carries Red Rams past Chittenango

As it turned out, two quarters was the approximate amount of time the Jamesville-DeWitt girls basketball team needed to shake off rust.

Once that was done, the Red Rams turned its attention to eliminating Chittenango in last Friday's opening round of the Section III Class A playoffs -- which it did, as Jessica Kramer took over in a 51-35 win over the Bears.

J-D came into the tournament as the no. 6 seed, riding a solid late-season wave of play. That wasn't the case with 5-15 Chittennago, who still used its familiarity with the Red Rams to make life interesting.

Mostly, the Bears were bent on stopping Alyssa Gratien, who had torched them for 31 points in a game two weeks earlier. Using a triangle-and-two defense, Gratien never got open much and only had three points all night.

Adjusting to all this, J-D could only match baskets in a low-scoring first half, which ended in a 16-16. Someone had to give the Rams a spark -- and Kramer obliged.

Solving Chittenango's defensive riddle, Kramer hit on all kinds of shots during a 16-6 third-quarter run that pushed the Rams ahead for good, then kept on going in the fourth quarter until she had a new career mark of 29 points.

Nicole Ortega, with nine points, and Theresa Hernandez, with eight points, gave Kramer enough help. Chittenango, in defeat, got 13 points from Maggie Kendrick and 10 points from Kayleigh Clark.

J-D now faces no. 3 seed Mexico in Tuesday's Class A quarterfinals. Though it beat the Tigers back on Jan. 30, the Rams also remembered that Mexico knocked them out 51-43 in this same round in 2008. Here, the winner will get New Hartford or Carthage in the semifinal round.

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