An historic Jamesville-DeWitt girls basketball season ended on a sour note Saturday night at Hudson Valley Community College as the Red Rams fell to Pittsford Sutherland 57-41 in the state Class A championship game.
All game long, the Red Rams struggled mightily on offense, shooting 26 percent from the field and turning over the ball 15 times.
Despite all this, the Red Rams were in no way dejected following the loss. On the contrary, some might have even perceived them as jovial.
"I'm smiling because we have 95 percent of our team coming back next year," said Alyssa Robens, who finished with 14 points and nine rebounds. "Hopefully we'll be back."
The Red Rams certainly have a strong chance to return to Troy. They graduate just two seniors, Kara Gantos and Olivia Cargian, and only Gantos received modest playing time.
Eighth-graders Meg Hair and Kasey Vaughan will surely improve, while three-year players Robens and Maddy Frank will be senior leaders and Carly O'Hern will be an upperclassman.
"We've got pretty much the core team back," J-D Coach Rob Siechen said. "We should have as good a shot as anybody."
The first quarter was close, with Sutherland leading 8-5 at its conclusion, but from there the game was out of JD's control. Just one game after going 1-for-12 from three-point range, the Knights nailed 38 percent of its attempts from beyond the arc
"We didn't think they could continue shooting them quite that well," Siechen said.
Although Sutherland was shooting lights out and J-D was struggling, a win was still possible at times, no matter how unlikely.
In one pivotal sequence to open the third quarter, O'Hern hit consecutive layups to narrow a nine-point deficit to five points, only to have Sutherland go on an 8-0 run that erased the Red Rams' progress.