Lady Marauders are Handed First Loss

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Lady Marauders are Handed First Loss

Sam McCloskey, Author

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Pleasant Valley Gymnasium might be the most energetic environment to play in all the area. On a Tuesday night January, 6th the Bishop Guilfoyle crowd and the student section was bumping with energy, but it was the visiting team that night that was able to thrive off of the energy in the building.

The Lady Lions entered the game 1-6 and took the floor looking to fight. A few early threes by the Lions gave them some life to start and went on a roll from there. Paige Whitfield had a game high 23 points and led the charge of attack. She gave Altoona two 3-pointers to start the game, but the Marauders hung close with a score of 21-20 at the end of one quarter.  It was at this point in the game however, that momentum would swing in favor of the Lady Lions as they compiled a lead of ten points midway through the 2nd quarter.  Despite this change in momentum, the Lady Marauders kept playing hard before the end of the half. With about a minute left in the 2nd quarter, Ryley Lewis picked off a pass and mad a lay up to tie the game. The Marauders looked like their normal selves and were about to take control until a 3-pointer by Amber Newberry of the Lady Lions gave them the momentum going into halftime.

The Lions kept momentum early in the 3rd getting another trey from Whitfield and the Marauders just could not gain any ground. The Lady Lions ended the quarter on a stunning 11-0 run. The Lady Lions felt that their tough schedule of playing the best teams in the state has done them well and it clearly showed that night. “We have taken something out of every game whether it is a win or a loss, our execution gets better every day and the system is falling into place”, said first year head coach Miriam Colledge. “We’ve been working hard on man to man defense are buying into the team based defense and are working hard on it every night.

The Lions were able to contain Lady Marauder star Lili Benzel who finished with 20 points but only had 3 of those in the second half. They put multiple girls are her throughout the game and it worked out in the Lions’ favor. “You could see Altoona’s energy in warmups”, said Guilfoyle head coach Mark Moschella. “I feel that we couldn’t match their energy and we were sluggish the entire night to say the least.”

Rachel Dibert, one of Altoona’s many seniors playing in their last city-rivalry game between the two squads, delivered a huge game herself. She had 17 points and 9 rebounds, controlling the boards the entire night. The Lady Marauders were coming off a huge win over state-ranked Delone Catholic and were thrown into a trap against the Lady Lions last night. The final score was 57-41 with the underdog Lady Lions coming up on top. Guilfoyle got handed its first loss, but everything they want to accomplish is still in front of them as district and state playoffs loom in the near future.

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