Published: Wednesday, December 29, 2010
For the first time in the history of the Comet Holiday
Tournament, Keystone claimed the championship.
Holding a 21-point lead late in the third quarter, Keystone saw host Amherst trim the lead down to eight in the fourth quarter. Keystone kept Amherst at bay with key free throws down the stretch to take the championship with a 49-35 win Tuesday.
“We knew Amherst is an aggressive team,” Keystone Coach Scott Terry said. “I thought we did a decent job of handling the ball against their pressure. Plus, we wanted to cut down on their lanes of penetration. The girls did a good job of executing the game plan.”
Keystone (8-1) continued its fine offensive play of Monday against host Amherst (4-3). Emily Nagy, who had a game-high 14 points, buried a three-pointer to give Keystone a 40-19 lead late in the third quarter. A Mackenzie Conrad layup proved to be Keystone’s final field goal of the game.
Going on a 12-0 run to start the fourth quarter, Amherst’s energy picked up defensively and force four Keystone turnovers and five missed shots.
Abby Rositano hit her third 3 of the game during the run, while Julia Porostosky (team-high 11 points) hit a three of her own. A Brianna Shagovac steal and ensuing layup capped off the run and cut the deficit down to 42-34 with three minutes left in regulation.
The battle Amherst gave came to an abrupt end as they only scored one point the rest of the game against Keystone’s 2-3 zone. Meanwhile, Keystone hit seven free throws to clinch the win. In the first three quarters, Keystone had only made seven free throws.
“It is a combination of youth and inexperience,” Amherst Coach John Rositano said. “It’s like a roller coaster as the girls get experience. The effort was there and they competed. We just didn’t make enough shots. We needed to make a few to loosen up their zone defense.”
Keystone held a 15-8 lead at the end of the first quarter when Emily Kolar banked in a three-pointer just inside half-court as the buzzer sounded. Kolar, who has been battling a back injury, came off the bench to score 12 points.”
“This was a coming out game for Emily,” Terry said. “She is playing with a lot of heart because of her back. She’s versatile playing either the point guard or at the two.”
While the offense was working efficient, Nagy
believes the constant work defensively helps Keystone capture the
“We have been getting a lot better at cutting off baseline and dribble penetration,” she said. “It’s something we work on all the time and is paying off.”
Amherst made enough shots to close cut Keystone’s lead down to 19-17 midway through the second quarter. However, Keystone scored the last seven points to hold a 26-17 lead.
Keystone’s stifling defense allowed Amherst only two points in the first seven minutes of the third quarter. The dry spelled allowed Keystone to take a 40-19 lead before Amherst mounted its comeback.