Having blazed to a 4-0 start, the Jamesville-DeWitt girls basketball team ventured to the Pete Hyde Coaches vs. Cancer Classic at Johnson City, near Binghamton, to face two Southern Tier opponents – and won on both occasions.
In the first of those games Tuesday the Red Rams, no. 14 in the first state Class A rankings of the season, met Oneonta, no. 8 in the state Class B poll and defending Section IV champions. Unfazed by the challenge, J-D beat the Yellow Jackets 51-45.
They played a pair of 16-minute halves, as opposed to eight-minute quarters. Fueled by Mariah Ruff’s 15 points in the first half, Oneonta stayed right with J-D and, in fact, led the Rams 28-26 going into the break.
However, in the second half J-D started to take over on the boards, finishing with 15 offensive rebounds, and held Ruff to just three points the rest of the way. The Rams got fortunate, too, in that the Yellow Jackets missed at least four open lay-ups, along with 10 of 18 free-throw attempts.
Kayleigh Cavanaugh was a big part of that inside game, amassing 13 rebounds to go with her 15 points. Cydney Goodrum led with 18 points, seven of them from successful foul shots, while Lauren Beville contributed eight points.
J-D would face Chenango Valley on Wednesday afternoon. Here, solid all-around play in the first half helped the Red Rams defeat the Warriors 49-42.
In those first 16 minutes, J-D applied intense defensive pressure, limiting CV’s possessions and grinding its way to a 19-12 lead. And during the second half, when the production picked up on both sides, the Rams maintained that edge.
Still, J-D had nervous moments. With less than two minutes left, Claire Walsh hit back-to-back 3-pointers, pulling the Warriors within two and forcing the Rams into a parade to the foul line. J-D was up to it, though, making eight of 10 free throws down the stretch.
Cavanaugh made five foul shots on her way to 17 points, while Stephanie Mannion stepped up, earning four of her 12 points at the line. Mannion and Katie Maroney, with eight points, made up for the struggles of Goodrum, who had just one field goal.
So J-D sits at 6-0 going into the new year, playing at Fowler on Wednesday before a non-league game at Corcoran on Jan. 7.