BRADFORD – The Tri-Village Lady Patriots size and defense took a toll over the course of the game against Bradford in a 67-47 Cross County Conference win.
Defense was on full display in the early going. Bradford was down 3 post players and playing undersized went to a box and one with Abby Gade drawing the assignment to slow down Patriot sharpshooter Rylee Sagester.
For the most part it worked in the early part of the game and in fact the only points scored were free throws by the Patriots who held a 7-0 lead at the two minute mark.
Bradford finally got a bucket off the break from Emily Canan but trailed 12-4 at the end of the 1st quarter.
The Patriot opened up a nice lead at the break going up 32-13 as Morgan Hunt scored 7 points in the 2nd frame.
Bradford stuck to their box and one defensive game plan after the break despite trailing by 17 points.
The Roaders struggled to score inside all game … but they got hot beyond the arch and closed the gap to 34-25 midway through the frame. They scored 18 points in the third quarter on 6 triples with Cassi Mead, Abby Fike and Riley Canan connecting on two each but still trailed by 16 at the end of the period 47-31.
The Patriots got 6 more points from Hunt who led all scorers on the night with 21 points, Tori Richards had 5 and Downing 4 in the 3rdframe to help the Patriots maintain their lead.
In the final stanza the Patriots got a boost from junior Maddie Bennett off the bench. She scored 6 points early, also dove for a loose ball and swatted a couple of shots that helped spearhead a nice surge for TV.
“The last two games Maddie has come off the bench and does what we know she can, not try to do too much, just play to her strengths and giveus energy. I thought the big play was in the beginning of the 4th quarter where she dove for a loose ball and that really sparked a nice run for us,” Tri-Village basketball coach Brad Gray praised.
Rylee Sagester who was out much of the 3rd quarter with 4 fouls buried a deep corner triple for the PATS who held a 56-35 advantage, onethey maintained the rest of the game going on to a 67-47 win.
“We saw the box and one again tonight, you would have thought after building a big lead they would come out of it, but it is what it is … they stayed in it and we just have to be ready to play against it and take what they give us,” Gray commented after the game.
“Tori Richards did an unbelievable job tonight defending Austy Miller, she loves the challenge of taking the other team’s best player and really she only had 3 points going into the 4th quarter,” Gray beamed.
“It helps when you have a 6’2” player behind you in the paint, so even if you make a mistake and she gets by, you have that rim help. Meghan Downing has done a tremendous job of just throwing shots away, she’s been that eraser for us allowing kids to go out and guard,” Gray added.
Cassi Mead and Riley Canan both score 13 points each to lead Bradford in scoring and Austy Miller added 12 points, 9 coming in the final frame.
After Hunts 21 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists, Meghan Downing added 15 points, 16 rebounds, 4 blocked shots, 4 steals and 4 assists. Rylee Sagester had 10 points and 7 rebounds and Tori Richards also added 10 points in the win.
“We knew coming out the gate playing these two teams early on; Arcanum and Bradford, both who are extremely experienced and having tournament success last season this wasgoing to go a long way in determining who the conference frontrunner would be, these were huge wins for us,” Gray concluded.
Score by Quarter
Tri-Village 12 … 20 … 15 … 20 – 67
Bradford 04 … 09 … ¬18 … 16 – 47
Tri-Village: R. Sagester 10, D. Gray 3, M. Hunt 21, M. Downing 15, T. Richards 10, M. Bennett 8; Totals; 5-19-14/22 – 67
Bradford: A. Miller 12, E Canan 3, C. Mead 13, A. Fike 6, R. Canan 13; Totals 10-5-7/10 – 47