With all of the quality victories it has achieved this winter and an unbeaten mark, the Bishop Grimes girls basketball team has risen to the no. 2 spot in the State Class C rankings.
Maintaining an unbeaten mark is never easy -- as fellow Class C unbeaten Little Falls found out on Wednesday night when it lost in overtime to Dolgeville, snapping a 15-game win streak.
A night later, the Cobras were back in action, hosting Pulaski at the Cobra Pit. Again, it got a spirited effort from the opposition -- but Grimes still made it 16-0 with a 43-33 victory over the Blue Devils.
At the start, it was difficult for the Cobras to focus, given all the festivities of Senior Night. Five Grimes players -- Amanda Marcely, Cady Kalemba, Emma Kelley, Ali Kelley and Cassidy Weeks -- were honored for their contributions to a team that had, to that point, gone 55-7 in their tenure. Senior cheerleaders and members of the pep band were honored, too.
So it took a while for Grimes to return the focus to basketball, as it suffered through an uneven first half on the offensive side.
When it came to defense, though, the Cobras were stingy once more, as the full-court press started to take hold in the second quarter and Grimes went to halftime with a 17-10 lead.
Eventually, the press led to turnovers and baskets, especially in the third quarter, when the Cobras outscored Pulaski 18-6. The Blue Devils would make a late run, thanks to Torie Hax and her 21 points, but the cushion proved too much.
Marcely earned yet another double-double, with 14 points (including eight successful free throws) and 12 rebounds. Kalemba put in nine points and four steals, while Ali Kelley had a career-best nine rebounds to back up her seven points.
Grimes now needs to get through two road games, at Cato-Meridian and Henninger, this week in order to complete an undefeated regular season.