Greenwood drops TVL title game to Susquenita
NEWPORT — While the Greenwood and Susquenita girls basketball teams split their four games this season, Susquenita’s wins meant far more.
The Blackhawks started their season by defeating Greenwood to claim the Perry County Championship and on Thursday night Susquenita defeated the Wildcats, 49-39, to claim the Tri-Valley League crown. In between the Wildcats triumphed twice, including a 51-33 drubbing in Cove on Jan. 17.
“We have played four times and it’s 2-2,” said Greenwood coach Jeff Deitz. “It’s not that we were awful, it’s that they were better than we were (tonight), and when you put two teams together who are good basketball teams, that is what is going to happen. Tonight was their night, the last two were ours. Unfortunately for us, this was the one where the winner gets a piece of hardware to take home.”
No juncture was more key to the Blackhawks claiming that hardware than the first few minutes of the second quarter.
Greenwood led 8-5 after a stanza on the strength of Abigail Taylor’s six first quarter points, but Susquenita scored the first 14 points of the second to put the Wildcats in a deficit they could never escape from. Taylor amassed eight points and had nine boards.
After buckets by Hailey Sherman and Madison Blyler put the Blackhawks in front 9-8, Alana Boyer started knocking down a barrage of 3-pointers. Boyer scored 11 of her 20 in the quarter and nailed five threes in the game. Blyler had a strong night as well racking up 17 points, 10 rebounds, two steals, and a block.
“(Susquenita made) one big run in the second quarter and we were never able to recover,” Deitz said. “(After that) every time we would string a bucket or two together, they would come down and hit a big shot. You have to give (Susquenita) credit.”
“We were patient in our offense, a lot more patient than we have been for most of the year,” explained Blackhawk coach Blaine Leonard. “(On defense) we stayed disciplined in our zone, (Greenwood) had a lot of 20 and 30-second possessions where they didn’t get the shot they were looking for. All around, it was the best effort we had all year. Boyer always plays well and always steps up when the lights are brightest. She has 100 percent confidence in herself and wants the ball when the game is on the line.”
Kenedy Stroup, who tallied 13 points and seven boards, finally ended the Wildcat dry spell by draining a 3-ball, but Susquenita took a 24-16 lead to the break.
The Blackhawks pushed their lead to 36-26 by the end of the third and cruised to the final despite eight fourth quarter points from Stroup.
Battling foul trouble, Alli Walton also had a strong night in defeat, registering nine points and 11 rebounds. Ella Brummer hit a pair of 3-pointers in her seven-point performance while securing three rebounds.
Both teams excelled at the stripe, with the Blackhawks sinking 11-of-14 while the Wildcats drained 9-of-12.
Greenwood advances to the District 3 Class A playoffs as the No. 3 seed when it hosts Halifax in a No. 3 vs No. 6 matchup on Feb. 21.
Susquenita 49, Greenwood 39
Alana Boyer 7 1-2 20, Haily Sherman 5 7-7 17, Madison Blyler 2 3-5 7, Mariah Masse 1 0-0 3, Mandi Armstrong 1 0-0 2. Totals 16 11-14 49.
3 point goals: Alany Boyer 5, Mariah Masse.
Did not score: Taylor Portzline.
Kenedy Stroup 3 5-6 13, Alli Walton 4 1-2 9, Ella Brummer 2 1-2 7, Abigail Taylor 4 0-0 8, Allison Crockett 0 2-2 2.Totals 13 9-12 39.
3 point goals: Ella Brummer 2, Kenedy Stroup 2.
Did not score: Mercedees McNaughton, Jordan Stroup..
Score by Quarters