Now was the time for the Jordan-Elbridge girls basketball team to transform all the talent and ambition it had showed in a 13-5 regular season into a deep Section III Class B playoff run.
The first step that the no. 6 seed Eagles took came in front of the home folks Tuesday night, as it ran away from no. 11 seed Watertown IHC in an impressive 63-44 win over the Cavaliers.
As other opponents had found out this season, IHC could not offer anything to counter the inside presence of J-E's sophomore center, Molly Hourigan.
Proving to be the anchor of a consistent Eagle defense, Hourigan earned her second triple-double in as many weeks. She blocked 10 shots and grabbed 18 rebounds to go with her game-best 25 points.
All those gaudy numbers helped J-E roar out to a 50-30 lead by the end of the third quarter. And any time the Cavaliers ganged up on Hourigan, Kali Davis flashed open and hit her shots, finishing with 15 points as Kelsey Richardson contributed seven points. Adriana Spicer led IHC with 18 points.
As a result of this, the Eagles will take a long road trip -- more than 100 miles, to be exact -- to meet no. 3 seed Sherburne-Earlville in Friday night's Class A quarterfinal. The Marauders, Center State Conference II regular-season champions, had eliminated Adirondack 64-50 in the first round.
Meanwhile, J-E's boys team, having made the Class B playoffs as a no. 15 seed, suffered a quick exit as it lost to no. 2 seed Bishop Grimes 84-60 in East Syracuse.
The Cobras tore through the Eagles' defenses for 28 points in the first quarter alone and stretched out its margin to 46-27 by halftime.
Despite Tom Graf hitting four 3-pointers and leading both sides with 27 points, J-E could not catch up, as Jeff Donofrio had eight points and Anthony Gabriel got seven points. Grimes had 1,000-point scorer Mike Stone earn 23 points as Mike Sugamosto added 22 points and 10 rebounds.