The JV girls’ basketball team won the Coaches vs. Cancer title
By CHRIS BROOKS, sports editor, wellsvillesports.com
BATH — Despite a close battle right alongside host Bath-Haverling in the opening round of the Coaches v. Cancer Holiday Tournament, the Lady Lions of Wellsville wanted to make sure their tenure closed on the most positive of notes on Thursday.
To close out the calendar year, the Lady Lions survived an early back-and-forth clash with Penn Yan in the opening quarter, and in turn, provided a powerful response in the next eight minute session to pull away and out of reach from the Lady Mustangs, as they scored a 54-27 doubling-up to split the two-day twinbill.
“We played well for four quarters tonight, and that’s what I had hoped to see to end the tournament,” Lady Lions coach Michelle Alvord said. “We’ve been in a lot of close games, the problem is that we haven’t been able to finish it out. Tonight, we got the lead and we held it through a back-and-forth start to pull away later. Our defense created a lot of turnovers tonight, and we created transitions out of it. Hopefully, this can give us the uptick we need to go back in the right direction.”
The Lady Lions (4-5) worked their way through a teeter-totter opening stage with Penn Yan, one that saw them gain the narrow edge after the quarter worked its way towards its conclusion.
The momentum would ultimately carry over into the second quarter when the last eight minute period of the opening half would be enough of a timespan to create a buffer zone for their lead. In all, a 16-4 second quarter run was created to push the advantage out to double digits.
A lead that was never threatened again, as Wellsville finished the night strong. The offense was charged by a game-high 21-point performance from Makenna Dunbar, who recorded six boards along the way to fuel the special teams contributions.
Dunbar would receive an All-Tournament nod at game’s end.
Helping further the cause was Natalie Adams, who had eight points to pair with five rebounds, five assists and three steals. Adding additional help off the glass were Lindsay Stuck and Averee Palmatier, as they each grabbed six and five boards, respectively.
In the JV Tournament, the Lady Lions provided a spectacular finish to what would be their first ever Coaches v. Cancer Tournament crown for head coach Brian Meyers, as they rolled past Newark Valley in the title game with a 26-8 victory.
Jaden Dunbar led all scorers with 11 points, as she and Caelyn Stevens both earned All-Tournament nods for their efforts. Up next for Wellsville is a trip to Cuba-Rushford after the New Year weekend, as they visit the Lady Rebels for a 7:30 p.m. battle on Tuesday.
Penn Yan 7 4 8 8 – 27
Wellsville 10 16 17 12 – 54
PENN YAN: Maihue Miranda-Wiltberger 1 0-0 2, Corinne Barden 2 0-0 4, Taylor Mullins 1 2-6 5, Hailey Trank 3 2-7 8, Mary D’Abbracci 1 0-0 2, Bailey Cooper 2 0-0 4, Makenna Mullins 1 0-1 2. Totals: 11 4-14 27.
WELLSVILLE: Lindsay Stuck 1 2-2 4, Natalie Adams 3 1-2 8, Emily Robbins 1 1-2 3, Sara Reitz 3 3-3 11, Averee Palmatier 2 3-4 7, Makenna Dunbar 7 6-8 21. Totals: 17 16-21 54.3-point goals: Penn Yan 1 (T. Mullins), Wellsville 4 (Reitz 2, Adams, Dunbar).Total Fouls: Penn Yan 13, Wellsville 14. Fouled out: None.
First round game, Wellsville girls
BATH — In their return to the court after the Christmas Holiday, the Lady Lions of Wellsville were looking to provide a big bounce back after a narrow defeat to the hands of Olean before the holiday freeze settled in.
The next stop was their yearly visit to the Coaches v. Cancer Tournament in Bath. The host Lady Rams of Bath-Haverling awaited.
Through the first eight minutes of play, it was the start that the Lady Lions wanted to have against a strong Lady Rams defense. With a seven-point lead to carry forward, the goal was to continue building onto the foundation.
But the hosts in white and blue would not allow it to ascend any further.
Bath-Haverling swayed the momentum towards their favor beginning in the next eight minute quarter, as they sparked strong efforts on both ends of the floor to close out the first half with the lead. Although Wellsville remained in reach, the Lady Rams would use the last eight minutes to pull away permanently towards a 41-33 first round win on Wednesday.
The Lady Lions (3-5) started strong on offense by holding Bath-Haverling at a near complete standstill through the first eight minutes, capitalizing on an 11-4 lead along the way. But the first quarter jitters were soon rectified by the Lady Rams with outscorings in two of the last three quarters of play — both of which allowed them to overtake Wellsville in the lead, and further extend upon it until it was no longer in reach.
After a 14-4 first half-ending run, Wellsville would still remain a stone’s throw away from Bath-Haverling after a tight third quarter battle opened up the second half. Down by three, the Lady Rams would wind up saving their best and most clutch effort for last, as they took control of the fourth quarter from start to finish to branch their lead out insurmountably, moving towards their eventual victory to claim a spot in the Championship round.
Leading the offense for the Lady Lions was Emily Robbins, who had a team-high eight points. Natalie Adams chipped in with seven points to pair with four rebounds, three assists and three steals, while Lindsay Stuck had six points. On special teams, Makenna Dunbar was dominant under the basket, grabbing a team-high 12 boards. Averee Palmatier had five of her own to grab.
In the JV Tournament, the Lady Lions navigated their way towards victory behind strong performances from Jaden Dunbar and Caelyn Stevens, as they strolled past host Bath-Haverling with a 47-9 win. Dunbar would lead with 13 points, while Stevens had 12 for Wellsville, who now faces Newark Valley in the title game tonight.
After the conclusion of that game, the Lady Lions will then take the floor for Consolation round festivities to close out their holiday stay in Bath, as they prepare to take on the Penn Yan Lady Mustangs in a 5:30 p.m. battle.
Wellsville 11 4 10 8 – 33
Bath-Haverling 4 14 10 13 – 41
WELLSVILLE: Lindsay Stuck 3 0-0 6, Natalie Adams 2 3-6 7, Emily Robbins 3 2-2 8, Sara Reitz 1 0-0 2, Averee Palmatier 2 1-2 5, Makenna Dunbar 1 3-4 5. Totals: 12 9-14 33.
BATH-HAVERLING: Meredith Czajkowski 6 2-4 15, Emma Luckenbach 2 4-8 8, Natalie Krelie 2 0-0 4, Madison Coots 3 3-4 9, Lola Coots 2 0-2 5. Totals: 15 9-18 41.
3-point goals: B-H 2 (Czajkowski, L. Coots).
Total Fouls: Wellsville 14, B-H 14. Fouled out: None.
Joe DeCerbo Tournament at A-L: Otto-Eldred 61, Wellsville 46
ALLEGANY — On day one of the Joe DeCerbo IAABO Tournament at Allegany-Limestone, it would feature a pair of early season elites going toe-to-toe to open the festivities on Thursday.
Between the Terrors of Otto-Eldred and the Lions of Wellsville: 13 victories on the season and just a single defeat, with Otto-Eldred entering the annual holiday twinbill perfect at 7-0.
For much of the battle, the two powerhouses to the north and south of the border locked horns, through and through. At one point, Wellsville saw the game break open with a lead by as much as 13 over the Terrors.
With the narrow advantage being lifted into the final eight minutes, all they needed to do was to remain one step ahead until they reached the finish line.
As for the Terrors, they had other plans.
The unbeatens struck gold in the fourth quarter, as they served up their ace in the hole — an enormous 22-6 run of the Lions to finish off their rally from behind, coasting their forward into the tournament’s Championship round with a huge 61-46 opening round victory.
After a mainly defensive first quarter was packed in the books, the offenses began to kick into gear, beginning with Wellsville (6-2) in the second quarter, as they posted their largest frame of attack in the battle with a balanced effort up and down the floor. As a result, the Lions would build a 26-20 lead on the Terrors heading into the break.
Logan Dunbar would help jumpstart Wellsville’s attack in the second half with 10 of his 12 points being scored in the third quarter, but a balanced effort on the other side of the floor for Otto-Eldred would see them begin to close the gap on the Lions heading down the homestretch, taking a double digit deficit and trimming it down to as little as one.
With the Terrors now right on Wellsville’s coattails to begin the fourth quarter, the momentum would soon come with it. From within the 22-6 run that the team in white and blue conducted, 13 of those shots found the twine from the charity stripe, as they went a clutch 13-for-15 from the line in the last eight minutes.
A big game-changing difference maker that would wind up helping Otto-Eldred go forth into the Championship round at the end of the night.
Wellsville was paced by Dunbar’s team-high 12 points on offense. Following behind was Aidan Riley and Cody Costello, who helped get the Lions going early in the first half, as they finished with 11 and 10 points, respectively. Asher Billings had seven points.
The Lions will enter Consolation round action back at Allegany-Limestone this afternoon, as they close out the holiday twinbill with a 2:30 p.m. tip-off against Bradford.
Wellsville 8 18 14 6 – 46
Otto-Eldred 9 11 19 22 – 61
WELLSVILLE: Cody Costello 4 0-1 10, Aidan Riley 4 3-5 11, Asher Billings 3 0-0 7, Ty Vogel 1 0-0 2, Logan Dunbar 6 0-0 12, JJ Howard 2 0-0 4. Totals: 20 3-6 46.
OTTO-ELDRED: Manning Splain 6 6-6 20, Austin Cousins 3 1-2 9, Landon Francis 4 9-11 19, Ray’Shene Thomas 3 4-4 10, Coy Van Scoter 0 3-4 3. Totals: 16 23-27 61.
3-point goals: Wellsville 3 (Costello 2, Billings), O-E 6 (Splain 2, Cousins 2, Francis 2).
Total Fouls: Wellsville 21, O-E 13. Fouled out: Costello (WLSV), Riley (WLSV).