Saturday, March 8, 2014
By GREG REID Special to the Press Herald
CUMBERLAND - Anyone seeking an example of how role players can impact a girls' basketball game need only to look at Greely's performance Thursday night.
Ashley Storey had 12 points and seven rebounds, and her older sister, Jaclyn, had six points and eight rebounds to lead the Rangers to a 38-33 victory over previously unbeaten Lake Region in a Western Maine Conference game at Greely High.
But, with the Rangers facing Lake Region's 6-foot-2 center Tiana-Jo Carter, Ashley Storey pointed out, it would take more than two players to get the job done.
"The biggest key was our defense," she said. "(Carter) is a big offensive rebounder, so we wanted to box her out and then have other people help on her."
Rangers junior forward Jordynn Copp drew the assignment of stopping Carter, who got her share of rebounds (12) and blocks (two), but was held to two field goals, one in the opening seven minutes of the game, and one in the fourth quarter, tying the score at 27 with six minutes to play.
"That result was 100 percent lack of execution, not getting the ball inside and when the ball got inside, not reading defense," Lake Region Coach Paul True said. "It was poor execution all the way around."
A short bench played a part in the Lakers' troubles. Starting guard Sydney Hancock (9 points, all on 3-pointers) was playing through an injury, and Lake Region was without key players Spencer True and Sarah Hancock, who both sat out with injuries.
"Greely doubled on (Carter), which we can expect every night, and that leaves an opportunity for another person to step forward and contribute," True said. "We're still looking for that person."
The Rangers' frenetic pressing defense didn't make things easier. Greely got a boost from freshman Margaret Hatch, who harassed the Lakers (6-1) all game. That came after she hit four key free throws in the second quarter to cap a 12-3 Rangers run to counter an early 8-0 deficit.
"I try to contribute as much as I can," she said. "I just try my hardest to help the team."
Another newcomer contributed key points for Greely (6-1). Sophomore guard Haley Felkel, a first-year varsity player, hit three key 3-pointers, including two in two minutes at the start of the third quarter, helping to push the Rangers' two-point lead to eight, 24-16.
Her final one? An electrifying shot with 50 seconds to play that pushed Greely ahead, 36-33. Ashley Storey had the final points, hitting both ends of a one-and-one with 14 seconds left.
"The better team won tonight," Greely Coach Joel Rogers said. "They scored eight points in the first two minutes of the game and 25 over the next 30. (Felkel and Hatch) combined for 16 of our 38 points, and (Copp) held Carter to two baskets. Overall we played very well."