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Girls basketball roundup and volleyball semi-finals with Wellsville and Cuba-Rushford

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Roundup: Rebels provide sweep behind resiliency, speed vs. Wellsville to go all-in on return trip to County Finals; Donohue’s epic 4th quarter airlifts Fri/Scio girls over Mt. Morris

PHOTOS and STORY by CHRIS BROOKS, wellsvillesports.com

CUBA — One singular step remains. With inaugural squad Allegany-Limestone waiting in the wings after clinching their first ever Allegany County Finals appearance, a second and final spot was up for grabs.

Either Wellsville or defending champion Cuba-Rushford would claim the vacancy as their own by the end of the night on Monday.

The Rebels were challenged by the Lions early on, as they had to overcome some adversity in the early-going of the night. It ultimately came down to a race towards the finish line in what would be the third and final set of action.

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In the end, Cuba-Rushford would prevail.

As they pushed Wellsville to the brink with the first two sets going in their favor, they would have to navigate their way through the most fierce set of the match. With back-and-forth points being exchanged all the way down the homestretch, the Lions would seek an opening with a two-point lead, resulting in a quick Rebels timeout.

After it was all said and done, what momentum the visitors had built, was erased completely by the defending League champions, as they finished off the straight-set sweep in the Wighthouse with eight of the last nine points, easing by with a 25-19, 25-19, 25-20 victory to claim the final spot in Wednesday’s League Championship.

“This was a really fun game to see us fight through adversity multiple times tonight,” Rebels coach Nick Perillo said. “I am really proud of our guys for not giving up, and credit to Wellsville, they had a really good season and they gave us their all in three tough, tough matches. We’re trying to push the tempo a bit, but it caused some fixable issues. We’ll need to fix up and tighten the little things for Wednesday.”

The first two sets saw Cuba-Rushford (15-1) battle with Wellsville early while holding the lead in their possession. The Lions would score six straight points after an initial 4-1 lead held by their opposition — one that the Rebels were able to shake off quickly to tie the game at one point, at 11 each. It would lead towards an exchange of points down the stretch, en route towards a first set win.

The pace would then ramp up entering the second set, as the Rebels gathered four straight points off of deflections that exited play after a 5-5 tie to jump ahead. Wellsville (8-8) would get to within a single point behind miscues forced against Cuba-Rushford, but another resounding spout of resilience would key the hosts in blue towards another springboard into the lead, branching it to as much as 12.

The Lions wouldn’t back down however, trailing 23-12 at one point, as they kept the pressure applied with seven of the last eight points going in their favor. But before they could get an opportunity to turn the tide, the Rebels would find a way to hang on and push Wellsville to the brink with another 25-19 win.

In the third and final set, a true back-and-forth race to the finish line, as each team delivered haymakers from start to finish. It would remain up until the Lions found an opening to take a two-point, 19-17 lead after a pair of Cuba-Rushford hits squibbed towards the netting to end play. The Rebels would call for time a moment later.

Afterwards, it was back to business, as the Rebels overcame one final piece of adversity to record the straight-set sweep with the strongest of finishes, collecting eight of the last nine points behind some strong service by Anderson Siegel to ensure their spot in the Finals was secure.

Siegel would finish with six team-high aces and two kills for the Rebels offense. Leading was Maddox Keller, who was outstanding with 14 game-high kills. Setter Allen Fuller handed out 20 helpers to his teammates, adding three more kills along the way.

Wellsville was paced by Xavier Scott and his seven kills, pairing them with a block and ace. Riley Graves chipped in with four additional kills to couple with two denials and one ace, while Gavan Dickerson dished out seven assists to pair with two aces, two digs and a block. The Lions wrap up the 2022-23 campaign with a record of 8-8 overall.

Cuba-Rushford now moves into the very last game of the season — the Allegany County Championship game, as they look to capture back-to-back titles, and their third in the last four years against the League’s newcomer: Allegany-Limestone, in a 6 p.m. first serve back inside the Wighthouse on Wednesday.

MORE GAME STORIES AFTER PHOTOS:

BOYS BASKETBALL

Fillmore 65, Andover/Whitesville 38

ANDOVER — As of late, the Eagles of Fillmore have begun the process of formulating their best basketball of the season at perhaps the most crucial of times. After withstanding a test of high magnitude against Class C power Geneseo last week, they picked up right where they left off with their seventh win in eight games, rolling past host Andover/Whitesville with a 65-38 road win on Monday, in Andover.

“We were able to momentarily slow the Fillmore attack for the first few minutes of the game, which had plagued us the last few times we played them. Inevitably enough, they opened it up on us late in the first and into the second,” Andover/Whitesville coach Jimmy Joyce said. “Sometimes, it’s hard to gauge your team against a powerhouse like Fillmore. Randy (Crouch) and his guys do a great, first class job over there. I felt like we played a lot better in the second half. We will take a few positives from this game and go back to work for our final regular season game. With Sectionals around the corner, we certainly have some work to do.”

Almost every single Eagle (12-5) found their way into the score book on the attack to fuel up two massive runs across the first half against Andover/Whitesville, as they started out red hot with a pair of 20-point quarters, with a 20-5 run in the first eight minutes. The momentum remained in Fillmore’s favor going into the break, where they continued to build onto their lead until they garnered all the room they needed to remain out front, wrapping up the second quarter with a 24-8 jaunt.

Zach Sisson and Mitch Ward combined to record 31 of Fillmore’s 65 points on offense, with Sisson bucketing a game-high 17 points. Ward followed with 14 points, while Eben Schilke pitched in eight points.

Andover/Whitesville (8-11) was fronted by an 11-point effort from Brody Vance, one that included a 7-for-8 outing at the stripe. CJ Estep and Kohler Niedermaier chipped in with eight points each. The team will now prepare for their final regular season battle next Wednesday night in Whitesville, hosting Hinsdale at 7:30 p.m.

Fillmore will now head back home and begin preparations for a game that will likely decide this year’s County Champion, as the Eagles welcome the Rebels of Cuba-Rushford into The Rock for a 7:30 p.m. tip-off on Thursday.

Fillmore 20 24 11 10 – 65

Andover/Whitesville 5 8 12 13 – 38

FILLMORE: Eben Schilke 3 0-0 8, Brent Zubikowski 2 0-0 4, Jair Bialek 1 2-2 4, Marcus Wolfer 1 0-0 2, Luke Colombo 1 0-0 3, Mitch Ward 7 0-5 14, Zach Sisson 8 0-0 17, Jonah Bialek 3 0-2 7, Brandon Buck 1 0-3 2, Jack Cool 1 0-1 2, Reid Cockle 1 0-0 2. Totals: 29 2-13 65.

ANDOVER/WHITESVILLE: Brody Vance 2 7-8 11, Colton Calladine 2 0-0 4, Jack Belmont 1 0-0 3, CJ Estep 4 0-0 8, Will Kent 1 0-0 2, Kohler Niedermaier 4 0-0 8. Totals: 14 7-8 38.

3-point goals: Fillmore 5 (Schilke 2, Colombo, Sisson, Jo. Bialek), A/W 1 (Belmont).
Total Fouls: Fillmore 13, A/W 11. Fouled out: None.

Houghton Academy 49, Hinsdale 28

HOUGHTON — Josh Davidson and James Adenuga fired Houghton Academy up from three-point range, as the two sharpshooters combined to record all nine of the team’s three-pointers. Along the way, the Panthers would navigate through a tough battle against visiting Hinsdale, pulling away with a strong fourth quarter finish to claim a 49-28 win on their home floor, Monday night.

Houghton Academy (2-13) would go on to outscore Hinsdale across all four quarters of play, but they were quarters they had to fight for, including the opening eight minutes where they would grab an early five-point cushion behind their 15-point conduction.

Points would then start coming at an absolute premium as both teams hunkered down in the defensive end to close out the first half before carrying the same tempo into the third quarter, where the Panthers managed to build a 10-point lead over the Bobcats (1-16).

In the last eight minutes, the hosts in white and blue picked up a full head of steam to close out the night, as they dug in to deliver their best frame of action with a 16-5 run of Hinsdale, pushing their lead insurmountably to claim victory.

Davidson led all scorers on the floor with a game-high 20 points for Houghton Academy, behind five three-pointers. Adenuga followed with the last four treys from beyond the arc, for 12 points. Marco Zanini added eight points.

Hinsdale was led by Xander Pascucci, who tallied nine team-high points. Brad Bergstrom collected seven points, while Damion Brown and Cody Barton rounded off the scoring with six points each. The Bobcats will travel to Friendship/Scio for a 7:30 p.m. contest on Friday, in Friendship.

The Panthers will continue their three straight nights of action back home to close it out with their remaining pair, beginning with a 5 p.m. visit from Genesee Valley/Belfast tonight.

Hinsdale 10 6 7 5 – 28

Houghton Academy 15 9 9 16 – 49
HINSDALE: Xander Pascucci 2 3-6 9, Damion Brown 2 0-0 6, Brad Bergstrom 3 0-0 7, Henry Schwartz 0 0-2 0, Cody Barton 3 0-5 6. Totals: 10 3-11 28.
HOUGHTON ACADEMY: Jack Prentice 2 3-6 7, Josh Davidson 6 3-5 20, James Adenuga 4 0-0 12, Marco Zanini 4 0-0 8, Pedro Rebello 2 0-0 4. Totals: 18 6-11 49.

3-point goals: Hinsdale 5 (Pascucci 2, Brown 2, Bergstrom), HA 9 (Davidson 5, Adenuga 4).
Total Fouls: Hinsdale 10, HA 9. Fouled out: None.

NY Land Quest congratulates all student athletes

GIRLS BASKETBALL

Friendship/Scio 53, Mount Morris 43

SCIO — Closing in on the final week of the regular season, there was no better time to create some noise than on Monday to start a brand new week on the hardwood.

That case was presented to Friendship/Scio during their search for their 10th win of the season. The battle against Mount Morris was neck and neck across all three quarters of play, with the hosts in white clinging to a three-point lead going into the last eight minute session. If there was ever a moment for a spark to come to light, it was now.

Fortunately enough, Kadence Donohue lit the match. And soon after, Friendship/Scio caught fire.

The Friendship/Scio senior strung together an unbelievable performance to close out the night against the Lady Blue Devils. Out of the 16 fourth quarter points posted onto the board, Donohue scored them all from every angle on the floor, as she single handedly propelled the team out of reach of their opposition and towards a 53-43 victory in Scio to snap a four-game slide.

“It was finally good to get back in the win column after a rough two weeks that gave us some hits. We’re healthy again, and I’m hoping it’s a good time for us to keep bouncing back and see where we end up,” Friendship/Scio coach Ashleigh Lewis said. “Kadence has been battling some leg injuries since December that have slowed her down, but tonight she was incredible. Even Nevaeh (Ross) was just as fantastic. They all moved the ball, and we had some open looks that we could capitalize on.”

Mount Morris and Friendship/Scio (10-7) were racing side-by-side all throughout the night, especially through the first three quarters of play where no outscoring was larger than a single possession. The hosts were able to provide the first half upper hand at the break however, as they garnered a 28-24 lead to control.

The Lady Blue Devils would knock the deficit back down to one before Friendship/Scio put together a strong finish behind Donohue’s dominance on the floor behind some excellent ball movement, compiling a 16-9 run to close out the battle out on top. Donohue would finish with a game-high 25 points to go with 12 rebounds to complete a big double-double performance.

Adding help along the way was Nevaeh Ross, who posted 19 points of her own, including a perfect 8-for-8 outing at the stripe, to pair with nine rebounds and five blocks. Morghyn Ross handed out eight assists.

Friendship/Scio is back on their home floor over the hill in Friendship on Wednesday, hosting Fillmore in a 7:30 p.m. contest.

Mount Morris 13 11 10 9 – 43

Friendship/Scio 16 12 9 16 – 53

MOUNT MORRIS: Emyah Green 3 0-2 6, Melissa Lopez 0 0-2 0, Cadence Stroud 6 0-2 13, Denishka Valentin 6 1-2 16, Maria Caceres Pou 1 0-0 2, Alysecia Young 1 0-0 2, Angelica Caceres Pou 1 0-0 2, Morgan Luick 1 0-0 2. Totals: 19 1-8 43.
FRIENDSHIP/SCIO: Nevaeh Ross 5 8-8 19, Claire Calhoun 1 0-0 2, Kadence Donohue 8 6-9 25, Morghyn Ross 1 0-0 3, Kiara Grover 1 2-2 4. Totals: 16 16-19 53.

3-point goals: Mt. Morris 4 (Valentin 3, Stroud) , F/S 5 (Donohue 3, N. Ross, M. Ross).
Total Fouls: Mt. Morris 19, F/S 6. Fouled out: Stroud (MTM).

Fillmore 58, Bolivar-Richburg 22

FILLMORE — The Russell sisters powered up another magnificent performance for the Lady Eagles of Fillmore on Monday, as the team recorded their sixth win in the last seven games behind a strong first half they used to ignite their way forward against visiting Bolivar-Richburg, rolling to victory by a 58-22 count in The Rock.

The Lady Eagles (12-5) defense buckled in right from the start against Bolivar-Richburg, making their presence known across all four quarters of play by holding the Lady Wolverines to under 10 points in each frame, beginning with a 15-6 run across the opening eight minutes.

Fillmore would go on to build on their lead insurmountably to close out the half, posting an 18-point frame — their largest of the game, to take care of business for their third straight win.

Hope and Grace Russell combined to produce 29 of the team’s 58 points, with Hope leading all scorers with a game-high 18 points. Grace followed with 11 points of her own, while Amelia Rose had nine to chip in.

Bolivar-Richburg (7-10) was led by Carmen Crowley and her 12 team-high points.

Both teams will return to action on Wednesday, with the Lady Eagles heading over the road to visit Friendship/Scio in a 7:30 p.m. contest in Friendship, while the Lady Wolverines head back home to host C.G. Finney in a 5:30 p.m. tip-off.

Bolivar-Richburg 6 9 5 2 – 22

Fillmore 15 18 12 13 – 58
BOLIVAR-RICHBURG: Emma Sisson 1 0-2 3, Raegan Giardini 2 0-0 4, Carmen Crowley 6 0-0 12, Malayna Ayers 0 1-2 1, Caitlyn Steiner 1 0-0 2. Totals: 10 1-6 22.
FILLMORE: Hope Russell 7 2-4 18, Grace Russell 5 0-0 11, Rachel Hatch 1 0-0 2, Kylee Ellsworth 2 0-0 4, Mattie McCumiskey 3 0-1 6, Preslee Miller 2 0-0 4, Amelia Rose 4 0-0 9. Totals: 26 2-5 58.
3-point goals: B-R 1 (Sisson), Fillmore 4 (H. Russell 2, G. Russell, Rose).
Total Fouls: B-R 5, Fillmore 10. Fouled out: None.

Houghton Academy 51, Hinsdale 17

HOUGHTON — The Lady Panthers of Houghton Academy would find a way to break it open after a first quarter defensive battle, as the tag team of Jess Prentice and Jessica Adenuga came together to post 43 of the team’s 51 points to score a 51-17 home win over visiting Hinsdale, Monday night.

Prentice led all scorers on the floor with a game-high 22 points for the Lady Panthers (5-13), who broke free from Hinsdale’s grasp after a defensive first quarter of play between both squads. To close out the first half, Houghton Academy would roll into the break behind a 16-4 run to ultimately secure their lead, permanently.

Adenuga would finish with 21 points, while Laura Maya had four points.

Hinsdale (0-18) was led by an eight-point effort from Sarah Tuttle.

Both teams are back in action Friday night with 6 p.m. tip-offs, as Houghton Academy welcomes in Andover/Whitesville, while Hinsdale hits the road for Friendship/Scio over the hill in Friendship.

Hinsdale 5 4 4 4 – 17

Houghton Academy 8 16 17 10 – 51


HINSDALE: Hannah Sutton 1 1-3 3, Kaylie Foskit 1 0-0 2, Jaylee Jimerson 2 0-0 4, Sarah Tuttle 4 0-0 8. Totals: 8 1-3 17.
HOUGHTON ACADEMY: Jess Prentice 10 2-3 22, Jessica Adenuga 9 3-5 21, Laura Maya 2 0-0 4, Abby Reitnour 1 0-0 2, Emily Xie 1 0-0 2. Totals: 23 5-8 51.
Total Fouls: Hinsdale 7, HA 4. Fouled out: None.

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