Both of Bishop Grimes’ basketball teams took a trip to Onondaga Community College’s Allyn Hall on Sunday to participate in the Pathfinder Bank Zebra Classic in a doubleheader against Cazenovia - but only one of them emerged with a victory.
Overcoming all kinds of struggles, the girls Cobras leaned on its defense to rally late and prevail 32-28, while the boys returned star forward Tom Steinberg to the lineup, but still went cold in the second half of a 63-53 defeat to the Lakers.
As it has done all season, the Grimes girls team, who improved its record to 10-3, found a way to win even when it was far from top form.
All game long, Cazenovia, who had just a 4-6 mark for the season, displayed a tremendous defensive effort, never letting Grimes get comfortable. But Cazenovia's own attack had its issues, too, and a pair of brief first-half leads quickly melted away.
Up 14-12 after a low-scoring first half, Grimes could not get away and, early in the fourth quarter, the Lakers threatened to take control.
Maggie Johnson earned a three-point play, Lizzy Bigsby converted a jumper and Johnson returned for a basket with 6:04 left that put the Lakers in front 28-22. But those would be Cazenovia's last points of the game.
Julia Freeman's basket launched Grimes' late comeback, which included back-to-back 3-pointers from Teresa Shattuck and Megan Costello that gave the Cobras a 30-28 lead. Both sides had plenty of chances down the stretch, but it was Jordan Vaught's jumper with 19.9 seconds left that doubled Grimes' lead to four, and it proved enough.
Vaught finished with 11 points and was the game’s Most Outstanding player, with Costello adding eight points and Johnson leading Cazenovia, also getting 11 points.
For the Grimes boys team, nursing a 6-5 record, bringing back Steinberg, who had missed a month of action due to an ankle injury, was well-timed, given the opposition.