Jan 11, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
For 31 minutes of court action Thursday night, the Skaneateles girls basketball team pieced together the kind of strong all-around effort that it needed to get past a quality opponent like Bishop Grimes.
Then, in the last 60 seconds, it almost fell apart.
Not until Joanna Dobrovosky secured a full-court pass near the corner of the court, and the buzzer sounded, did the Lakers escape from East Syracuse with a 60-59 victory over the Cobras and an overall record of 8-2.
The chaotic ending started calmly enough, when Dobrovosky, who had seven of her 12 points in the fourth quarter, sank a pair of free throws with 1:04 to play, which extended the Skaneateles lead to 60-48, its biggest margin of the night.
Grimes’ Teresa Shattuck quickly hit a 3-pointer, and then the Cobras pressed, forcing a Skaneateles turnover that led to another basket that made it 60-53.
Concern only grew when, under heavy duress, the Lakers turned it over again. Off that turnover, Grimes’ Megan Driscoll hit a basket and was fouled with 30.3 seconds left.
When Driscoll made the ensuing foul shot, it was 60-56. After calling a time-out, Lakers guards Elizabeth Lane and Brittany Welch managed to dribble off a vast majority of the remaining clock, Grimes unable to get a foul to stop things.
Still, Skaneteles could not prevent Grimes’ Jordan Vaught from making a steal. Running low on time, Vaught streaked to the top of the key and drained another 3-pointer, cutting the once-formidable Laker margin to one.
But just 1.5 seconds remained on the clock, enough time for the long pass down the court that nearly went too far before Dobrovosky chased it down and held on for the horn to sound.
In truth, much of the game had been a close affair. Though Skaneateles led for all but nine seconds (Grimes briefly took a 28-26 lead late in the second quarter before Joanna Dean tied it), it could not get away, even as it closed the first half on a 7-0 run to lead 33-28 at the break.
Lane, held to five points in Tuesday night’s win over Hannibal, atoned in a big way here. The sophomore guard had 18 points, including a trio of 3-pointers, as the margin grew as big as eight, 44-36, late in the third quarter.
With less than four minutes left, the Lakers were up 51-46, but it appeared to settle matters by going on a 9-2 run.
Between them, Dobrovosky and Sarah Tomlinson made five of six free throws during that stretch, a sharp contrast to the Cobras’ struggles at the line throughout the game (it only made 12 of 23 foul shots), without which Grimes would not have needed that near-miracle at the end.
Dean gave the Skaneateles another strong outing off the bench, the 6-foot-1 senior forward earning 12 points, the same total as Dobrovosky, who again had to sit long stretches due to foul trouble. Tomlinson got eight points, with Nicole Beatson gaining six points.
Grimes had a balanced attack, led by Driscoll, who put up 11 points, and followed closely by Alex Guhin (10 points), Tina Hoag (nine points), Vaught (eight points) and Julia Freeman (seven points).
Two days before going to Grimes, the Lakers hosted Hannibal. It was far from a smooth and confident effort, but Skaneateles withstood Devin Sorrell’s big performance and defeated the Warriors 46-34.
Despite getting a quick 11-5 lead, Skaneateles could not generate much offense the rest of the first half, relying instead on defensive pressure to keep itself out in front, 17-13, going to the break.
Gradually, the pace quickened in the second half. Sorrell would try to keep Hannibal close, earning 23 points and scoring nine of the Warriors’ 14 field goals.
Skaneateles countered by going inside. Dean led the way with a career-best performance, recording 15 points and 15 rebounds, while Dobrovosky managed 13 points.
After the Lakers play Phoenix on Monday, it is off for eight days until Jan. 22, when it visits Marcellus, two days before the much-anticipated rematch with state Class B no. 2-ranked Westhill.