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Wellsville girls stopped by Division I commit; Hinsdale wins Scio tourney

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Thursday Basketball: Rapid start by Newark Valley stymies Lady Lions at Coaches v. Cancer Tourney, will face host Haverling in Consolation; Hinsdale boys capture Scio Christmas Tourney crown  

By Chris Brooks, managing editor, wellsvillesports.com

BATH — The Coaches v. Cancer Tournament in Bath was officially in full swing Thursday afternoon, as the Lady Lions of Wellsville hopped on the bus and made the trip out for their first game back on the hardwood after the brief Christmas recess.

On tap was a Section IV representative that has navigated through the State rankings and into the Top 10 in Class B — Newark Valley, led by the likes of Division-I commit Cha Gardner. For the Lady Lions, they were challenged right out of the gate.

Newark Valley took full advantage of the first eight minutes of play to open the Varsity docket of the tournament, scoring an 11-3 early run of Wellsville to set the tone right away. From the second quarter on, the Lady Lions chipped away at their deficit, but the Lady Cardinals managed to stay in front to control their own destiny towards the Championship game with a 45-33 victory.

“The Gardner girl is going to Stephen F. Austin after she graduates, and we didn’t have an answer for her tonight. We tried to settle in and develop a game plan after that first quarter, and we did for the most part to hang with them. But the start of the game was the difference,” said Lady Lions coach Michelle Alvord. “They’re a State-ranked team, and this was a good look at some great competition. There were some great things, especially from Caelyn (Stevens) and Jaden (Dunbar). Both of them had their best games so far this year. But we’ll get to where we need to be.”

The first quarter was the difference that helped pay massive dividends for the Lady Cardinals to start the night, as they sprinted out with a full head of steam with 11 of the game’s first 14 points near the midway point of the frame. The run would essentially allow Newark Valley to set the tone, as they wrapped up the frame with an 18-8 lead to carry forward.

The Lady Cardinals would extend their lead across the next eight minute session to post a 30-15 halftime lead over the Lady Lions (5-2), as they remained in the driver’s seat for the remainder of the game to seal their spot in the Championship round the following day.

Wellsville was paced by a strong performance from Caelyn Stevens, as she recorded a team-high 12 points to go with six rebounds and four steals. Natalie Adams followed behind with eight points, while Jaden Dunbar had five points to pair with five rebounds.

In addition on special teams, Makenna Dunbar made her presence known off the glass, grabbing seven big rebounds to go with three assists.

In the JV contest, the Lady Lions were able to punch their ticket to the Championship game themselves behind a big 10-point game from Raegan Vogel, as they took the 24-19 win over Newark Valley. Reegan Perkins collected eight points to further the cause.

Tonight, the Lady Lions head back to Bath-Haverling for Consolation round action to close out the Coaches v. Cancer Tournament against the host Lady Rams, beginning at 5:30 p.m.

Newark Valley 18 12 9 6 – 45

Wellsville 8 7 9 9 – 33

NEWARK VALLEY: Cha Gardner 9 0-0 18, Aubrey Kwiatkowski 3 0-2 7, Adrianna Finta 3 1-1 7, Liv Short 4 1-2 9, K. Beebe 1 0-0 2, Adriana Rich 1 0-0 2. Totals: 21 2-5 45.

WELLSVILLE: Caelyn Stevens 4 2-2 12, Natalie Adams 4 0-0 8, Emily Stuck 0 1-2 1, Averee Palmatier 1 1-2 3, Makenna Dunbar 1 2-2 4, Jaden Dunbar 2 0-0 5. Totals: 12 6-8 33.

3-point goals: NV 1 (Kwiatkowski), Wellsville 3 (Stevens 2, J. Dunbar).
Total Fouls: NV 8, Wellsville 5. Fouled out: None.

BOYS BASKETBALL

Scio Christmas Tournament

Hinsdale 45, Alfred-Almond 31

SCIO — Led by a phenomenal game from Tyler Richards, the Bobcats of Hinsdale were able to score the second victory they needed to officially put a bow on the Scio Christmas Tournament crown on Thursday, as they became champions of the annual holiday gauntlet with a 45-31 victory over the Alfred-Almond Eagles.

Richards led all scorers on the floor for the Bobcats (3-2) with a game-high 22 points, while Henry Schwartz followed behind with 12 points of his own.

For Alfred-Almond, Jackson Jusianiec led the scoring with his team-leading 20 points. The Eagles will close out their journey in Scio with Consolation round action against host Friendship/Scio this afternoon at 1 p.m.

The Bobcats will hit the hardwood again after the New Year on Tuesday back home, as they face Friendship/Scio once again in a 6 p.m. contest.

Scio Christmas Tournament opens with furious 4th quarter jaunt by Hinsdale as Childs, Barton pave path towards 36-27 victory for Bobcats over host Friendship/Scio in return to action  

SCIO — Christmas is now officially history, but winter break continued on. But for Hinsdale and Friendship/Scio, their brief return to action this week came Wednesday night with the spotlight shining bright on the annual Scio Christmas Tournament.

For most of the night between the two squads, it was neck-and-neck, with Friendship/Scio carrying a bulk of the momentum across the first half to claim an early lead of the Bobcats. But in the second half, gears were shifted in favor of the visitors in blue, as they took advantage of their opportunities to the fullest, including a big fourth quarter run to set themselves apart from their opposition with a 36-27 victory.

“They outscored us by nine in the fourth. We just have to get a lot tougher going after rebounds. Overall, the physicality needs to improve,” Friendship/Scio coach Dillon McFall said. “As a unit, we’re getting thrown around and at some point, it has to change and we need to find a way to start clicking together. When you look at the game today, you’re not going to win games by scoring the amount of points that we did. We had way too many turnovers, especially when we went on the fast-break.”

For both sides across the first half, points came at a premium, especially out of the gate in the first quarter when the Bobcats (2-2) surfaced an early one-point advantage to carry into the next frame of play. In the second, a momentum shift was formulated for the hosts in white, as they managed to leave the first quarter in the rearview mirror and finish the half strong with a 9-4 outscoring to propel towards a 13-9 lead at the break.

Looking to take full advantage of the opportunity upon their return to the court, Hinsdale turned the tables on Friendship/Scio (1-7) with their two strongest offensive spurts of the night. They would manage to tie the game at 21 after the third quarter before pulling away and out of reach in the last eight minutes with their tide-turning 15-6 jaunt of the hosts, locking up the victory for the Bobcats on the first night of two at the annual holiday tournament.

Leading Hinsdale was Robert Childs and his 11 team-high points. Right behind him was Cody Barton, who chipped in with 10 points. Henry Schwartz had nine points.

As for Friendship/Scio, Jerome Harmon posted an 11-point, 12-board double-double to lead the offense. Connor Blouvet scored 10 points to go with five rebounds and five steals.

Both teams will have Alfred-Almond up next back in Scio in the upcoming days, with Hinsdale facing the Eagles first in a 6 p.m. tip-off tonight. Friendship/Scio will help wrap up the Christmas Tournament with a 1 p.m. contest against the Eagles, Friday afternoon.

Hinsdale 5 4 12 15 – 36

Friendship/Scio 4 9 8 6 – 27

HINSDALE: Brad Bergstrom 0 1-4 1, Henry Schwartz 4 1-4 9, Cody Barton 5 0-0 10, Tyler Richards 2 1-3 5, Robert Childs 5 1-2 11. Totals: 16 4-13 36.

FRIENDSHIP/SCIO: Aiden Golden 2 0-0 4, Jerome Harmon 5 1-3 11, Connor Blouvet 4 0-0 10, Matt Donohue 1 0-0 2. Totals: 12 1-3 27.

3-point goals: F/S 2 (Blouvet).
Total Fouls: Hinsdale 14, F/S 16. Fouled out: None.

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