Dec 22, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Though it still looms over local opponents, the Cicero-North Syracuse girls basketball team knew that it wouldn’t be the case when it went to Francis Lewis High School in Queens for a pair of weekend tests before the holiday break.
In the first of those games, the Northstars faced St. Mary’s, from Long Island, and looked to be in control before a rough fourth quarter led to a 51-42 defeat.
Strong at the start, C-NS bolted out to a 14-6 lead, and even though St. Mary’s settled down for the rest of the half, the Northstars still carried a 22-16 advantage to the break.
As the pace picked up in the third quarter, C-NS hung on, and still was in front 35-33 going to the fourth quarter, only to get run over down the stretch by St. Mary’s.
And it didn’t help that the Northstars never got comfortable at the free-throw line, sinking just four of 15, and missing all five of its attempts in the final period.
Samantha Roberts paced C-NS with 10 points. McKayla Roberts, with nine points, was close behind as Elizabeth Miles managed six points.
A day later, C-NS met Immaculate Heart Academy, from New Jersey, knowing that it would be its last game action until a Jan. 7 trip to Fayetteville-Manlius. This time around, the Northstars were able to finish well, and it led to a 49-47 victory.
Just like the St. Mary’s game, C-NS led by eight points after the first quarter, bolting to a 15-7 lead. And it maintained that margin until the third quarter, when Immaculate Heart used its own 14-6 push to pull back even.
Throughout the final minutes, the two sides exchanged baskets, but C-NS pulled it out, led by Samantha Tortora, who produced a season-high 15 points, including a crucial late free throw.
Emilee Norris also stepped up, putting in 11 points. McKayla Roberts gained eight points, while Miles again finished with six points. Samantha Roberts (five points) and Beth Bonin (four points) accounted for the rest of the offense.
As that was going on, C-NS alumni were making an impact, beyond Breanna Stewart’s well-known work for the top-ranked, defending national champion Connecticut Huskies.
Abbey Timpano, a freshman at Marist College, has helped the Red Foxes win six games in a row, the biggest of them a 76-69 conquest of no. 19-ranked Oklahoma in Poughkeepsie.
Timpano did not play in that game, but she has seen minutes alongside senior Leanne Ockenden, a CBA graduate who had 17 points in that win over the Sooners.