Dec 19, 2012 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
When all other things don’t work, the Jamesville-DeWitt girls basketball team leans back on the defense that helped produce one Section III Class A title and a good chance at another.
That was how the Red Rams kept itself undefeated on Tuesday night, trailing Fayetteville-Manlius most of the way, but pulling ahead when it mattered and hanging on for a 35-33 victory to move its mark to 6-0.
It only figured that the last possession involved a J-D stop. Trailing by two, with a chance to tie or get the lead, F-M tried to work the ball inside, but found nothing against the Rams’ tight pressure. Instead, it settled for Rachel Miller getting a 3-point attempt from the left wing that fell short as the clock ran out.
So ended a strong, but frustrating effort for F-M, who nearly pulled off its third consecutive high-quality road win after prevailing at Corcoran and West Genesee the week before.
At first, it was the Hornets’ defense controlling matters. J-D did not get a field goal in the game’s first 4:47, until Cydney Goodrum converted a lay-up. Four points from freshman guard D’jhai Patterson-Ricks, whose free throws sealed the West Genesee win, helped F-M streak to a 12-4 lead.
Yet the Hornets could not take full advantage of this good start, going through its own six-plus minute scoring drought that stretched deep into the second period. So while F-M was up 18-12 at halftime, it had left the door wide open, and J-D ran would run through it.
A 9-2 surge early in the third quarter, with four of the points from Alyssa Robens, had the Rams within one, 22-21. F-M countered with six straight points, but in a critical sequence Arriel Mussi hit a lay-up and a three-point play on consecutive possessions, thrusting J-D back within two, 28-26, with one period left.
F-M gave up the lead for the first time early in the fourth quarter, but quickly took it back, peaking when Madison Beck hit a jumper with 3:06 to play that made it 33-29. Those would be the Hornets’s last points of the night.
Goodrum’s free throw and Mussi’s basket cut the margin to 33-32. Then Goodrum grabbed a tough rebound on a missed shot and, on the other end, got fouled with 1:09 to play. Though she had missed earlier shots, Goodrum’s attempts this time both swished through, and the Rams were in front.
Down the stretch, J-D was determined to take away any inside looks for Beck and her fellow 6-footer, Lauren Getman, who had combined for 20 points so far – Getman 11, Beck nine.
And it worked, as F-M was forced into 3-point attempts by Erica Assimon and Miller that missed the mark. That, along with a late free throws by Robens, helped the Rams hang on.
Overall, Robens led the hosts with 11 points, just ahead of Mussi, who got 10 points, and Goodrum, who earned nine points.
F-M will look to bounce back this weekend when it plays in Central Square’s Traci Zimmer Memorial Tournament, while J-D meets Fowler on Thursday and another Class AA contender, Nottingham, on Friday night.