December 11, 2013

Girls’ basketball: Wells pressures York for a win

The Warriors take control early against the young Wildcats.

By Greg Reid
Special To The Press Herald

WELLS — Alison Furness called it “controlled chaos.”

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Chloe Smedley of York, right, pulls down a rebound from Taryn Lambert of Wells during their Western Maine Conference game Tuesday night. Wells opened a 16-6 lead after one quarter and went on to a 57-38 victory.

Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer

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York's Chloe Smedley tries to block a layup by Wells' Syndney LaChapelle. Tuesday, December 10, 2013. Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer 281371

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Like the rest of her game, Furness was again on the mark.

Wells’ early pressure defense proved too tough to handle and Furness scored 32 points as Wells rolled to a 57-38 victory over York in a Western Maine Conference girls’ basketball game Tuesday night.

“We were trying to run around, create a little bit of controlled chaos and freak them out a little bit,” Furness said. “But also know when to pull back and stay under control.”

Nicole Moody and Stephanie Woods (eight points) led the press that rattled the Wildcats, who start three sophomores and were without their star, Shannon Todd, who is recovering from mononucleosis.

“The start was the whole key to the game. We weren’t ready for their press,” York Coach Rick Clark said. “That first play, we saw it coming, deflected the ball, but we deflected it into (Furness’ hands) for a basket. From that moment forward, we just got caught up in it. We’re a very young team. We didn’t have our leader and we melted under the pressure.”

Clark said Todd’s calming presence likely would have made Wells’ pressure “less daunting. But we’ve got to do what we can to get better before she gets back.”

As it was, Wells pulled to a 16-6 lead after one quarter and York never recovered.

“The good start helped with our energy,” said Jordan Agger, who had six points, eight assists and a team-high eight rebounds for Wells. “On the bench and throughout the floor, we did the little things and kept the energy flowing.”

Sophie Lamb added six rebounds and a block for the Warriors (2-0), whose motion offense and backside screens left Furness open at the baseline, where Agger found her with hard over-the-top passes. It didn’t help the Wildcats that Furness also got free to hit four 3-pointers.

“I don’t know, I was just kind of open, I figured I might as well,” Furness said. “It really depends on what the defense is doing. I try not to push that.”

“She’s worked hard to complete her game,” Wells Coach Don Abbott said. “I’ve long felt she’s one of the better players in the state going to the basket. If she’s going to make 3s like that, she’s virtually impossible to guard.”

Abbott said he was glad the Warriors could build on their 45-32 opening win at Cape Elizabeth.

“It was nice to get off to a good start, get up early and slowly balloon the lead,” he said. “Everyone is starting to understand their roles and how they can help us win, and everyone who played contributed to this win.”

Chloe Smedley scored 10 points with eight rebounds to lead the Wildcats (1-1). Erin McCafferty scored seven points, and Suzanne Donovan and Emma Thomson each had five.

“Wells is a very good, veteran team, that’s the difference,” Clark said. “Our goal is to be much better at the end of the season than we are at the start. We’ll learn from this and get better because of it.”

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Additional Photos

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Wells' Alison Furness is pressured by York's Emma Thomson while looking for an open teammate Tuesday. Tuesday, December 10, 2013. Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer 281371


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