Strong defensive effort in 48-23 win over visiting G.I.
By John D'Onofrio Lockport Union-Sun & Journal
Strong defense and sold play throughout the line-up were the keys in Lockport’s run-away 48-23 Niagara Frontier League girls basketball win over visiting Grand Island on Tuesday.
With the win, head coach Karen Catalano’s Lady Lions improved to 7-1 in the NFL and are 8-2 overall. The Lady Vikings dropped to 2-6 in the league and 2-8 overall.
“Lockport’s a very good team. They’re big and strong and they played that way the whole game,” said Lady Vikings head coach Rachel Martin.
Speaking of big and strong, Lockport junior Alyssa Wagner netted a dozen points with 6 rebounds and 5 steals and sophomore Gretta Dry added 11 points and 4 steals to pace Lockport, which led from start to finish in a lopsided affair in the Lady Lions’ Den. Junior Hailey Bechtold had 7 and steady freshman point guard Carissa DiTullio chipped in with 6 points for LHS.
“It was a total team effort. Everyone committed to playing defense,” Catalano said, adding that she was especially pleased with the strong play of her “role” players, including senior defensive specialists Kennedy Smith (2 rebounds, 2 steals, 2 assists) and Roserita DiMillo (2 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists).
“They know their roles,” Catalano said. “They embrace their roles and I think that embodies what a team is all about.”
Dry scored eight, first-quarter points, including a rare, 4-point play, as the Lady Vikings were held to just one field goal in the first quarter. LHS led 17-2 after one quarter, and with Catalano substituting heavily the rest of the game, led 25-5 at the half and 42-14 after three quarters.
Lockport senior center Sara Franco was held to just 2 points Tuesday, but teammates freshman Kathryn Krchniak, sophomore Brooklyn Camarra (4 points, 6 rebounds) and junior Katherine Kerrissey all played strong in the paint, as did sharp-shooting juniors Angela Sammarco and DeAnna Wiley in the backcourt.
Karli Deiser topped Grand Island with 6 points. DaKayla Winfield and Lexi Kalinowski added 4 each for the visitors.
Newfane 56, Barker 38
NEWFANE — A balanced offensive scoring attack and strong play under the glass by Marlo MacFarlane was the difference Tuesday night in the Blue Zone as head coach Kevin Klumpp’s Lady Panthers improved to 6-2 in the N-O and are 8-4 overall.
Newfane led 23-10 after one and 34-14 at halftime, before cruising.
Claire Puff led the winners with 11 points, 5 steals and 6 assists. MacFarlane dominated the boards with 16 rebounds.
Julia Atwater topped the Lady Raiders (4-3 N-O, 6-4 overall) with 13 points. Fellow senior Olivia Denny added 11 points for Barker.
Wilson 53, R-H 22
MIDDLEPORT — Head coach Brian Baker’s Lakewomen continue to dominate the N-O, improving to 7-0 in the league and 9-2 overall.
Emily Lasher led the winners with a game-high 23 points, adding 8 rebounds and 6 steals. Allie Bubar added 14 points, 8 steals and 8 rebounds and Dana smith chipped in with 6 points, 7 assists and 10 rebounds.
Junior Kendra Hill led the Lady Rams (1-7 N-O, 2-9 overall) with 10 points.
“It was a good win for us tonight,” Baker said. “I thought Roy-Hart played us tough in the first half and then Allie Bubar scored eight points in the third, setting the tone for a big second half.
Next up for Wilson is a big game Friday against visiting Albion on “Wipe Out Hunger Night.” Fans can get in free with the donation of canned food.
Lockport 76,Grand Island 40
GRAND ISLAND — Lions head coach Dave Gilson and his promising team can finally look ahead to Friday’s highly-anticipated match-up against visiting, undefeated Kenmore West with a huge road win Tuesday on Grand Island.
The Lions led by 21 points after one quarter, then led 47-17 at halftime, before cruising to their eighth NFL win in nine starts.
Ryan Lawrence led the blue and gold with a game-high 24 points, adding 8 boards. Fellow senior Colin Dougherty added 20, Mo Townsend 9 and Charlie Sobieraski 8 points and 8 rebounds for LHS (8-1 NFL, 9-3 overall). The Vikings dropped to 1-7 in the NFL. Danny Bronson added four assists for the Lions.
Joe Kulikowski topped the home team with 17 points.
“I’ve been trying to hold them back. Now I guess we can finally look ahead to Friday,” Gilson said. “Friday’s a big game for us. There should be a nice atmosphere. It’s good to have them at home.”
Ken West beat visiting Lockport in December, 65-62, in their earlier meeting this season.
Barker 58, Newfane 39
BARKER — The N-O’s best player by far in 2013-14, Raiders senior Jake Haight, led all scorers with 21 points in Tuesday’s win against visiting Newfane.
Bryce Moeller added 12 points, 9 blocks and 7 rebounds for head coach Dave Carson’s undefeated Raiders (6-0 N-O, 10-0 overall). Mitch Luckman added 11 points and 7 assists; and Chris Sweeney chipped in with 10 points for the winners.
Sam Watkins topped head coach Eric Klumpp’s Panthers with 12 points. Josh Kneeland added 10.
“Jake’s coming off back-to-back triple-doubles. He had five rebounds and seven steals. He certainly is a complete player,” Carson said. “I thought both teams did a nice job defensively. They defended well against our shooters and I felt we did the same. I was happy with our effort. A credit to them that they held us to 12 points under average this year.”
Next up, the Raiders hit the road for a Thursday contest at CSAT.
Frontier 76,Starpoint 54
HAMBURG — Christian Nodine scored 19 points and Ben Walters scored 14 for the Spartans.
Starpoint dropped to 3-5 in ECIC II and 5-6 overall.