Gritty Rockets fall to Wildcats, Devils win, ACS splits in girls' hoops

By Julia Green
In a game more reminiscent of a poker hand than a basketball match-up, three of a kind nearly beat a full house last Tuesday, when the Roxbury girls played host to the visiting Wildcats of Gilboa. The game went down to the wire and the Lady Rockets found themselves down to only three players, having succumbed to foul trouble.
They stayed in it, however, and were tied with the Wildcats at 45 apiece with 20 seconds remaining when Gilboa’s leading scorer, Brooke Koerner, hit a three to take the three-point lead that would ultimately give them the win.
The Rockets went into the hole early, as Gilboa posted 11 points to Roxbury’s five in the opening quarter; however, the hosts battled back in the second, tallying 17 points to Gilboa’s 10 to take a one-point lead into halftime.
“We got down early in the first quarter – I think we were down six points – and that’s kind of been a pattern this year,” said Roxbury Head Coach Tom Sherwood. “We just haven’t gotten off to good starts in games, it seems like we’re always coming from behind. But we played a good second quarter and got ahead of them at the half, and it stayed pretty back-and-forth in the third and fourth quarter.”
Both teams tallied 11 points in the third quarter, enabling Roxbury to maintain its one-point lead, and a back-and-forth final quarter found them tied with less than 30 seconds remaining.
“We were playing with three people and were kind of in a triangle protecting the lane, and their girl stepped way out to the far right-hand corner and took a pass and we didn’t have time to get out to her,” Sherwood said. “But you’ve got to give her credit, she made the shot.”
Sherwood added that his team’s brightest moments have mostly come as a result of playing solid defense.
“Pretty much the whole year we’ve played pretty good defense,” he said. “And I think that’s been the key to our success – any games we’ve been competitive in I think have been because of our defense. The area we need to work on going forward, and even into next season, is our offense.”
The Rockets were led by Kennedy Faraci, who tallied 17 points and went 13-for-21 from the foul line.
“Kennedy was penetrating to the basket and drawing fouls, so that kind of kept us in the game the second half, also,” Sherwood said.
The Rockets traveled to face the host Rams of South Kortright on Thursday, falling 55-14 to the unbeaten Rams, who clinched their third consecutive league title.
The Rams jumped out to an early lead, outscoring the Rockets 18-2 in the opening quarter. South Kortright continued to pressure Roxbury in the second, adding 11 points and limiting the Rockets to four to take a 29-6 lead into halftime.
“I knew coming off the game Tuesday, which was kind of a physical, rough game, that it was going to be a tough go on Thursday because our girls were really tired out from Tuesday and you’re going up against one of the top three teams in the league,” Sherwood said, adding that his team did not shoot particularly well in Thursday’s match-up.
“We had some chances early on in the first quarter to be in the game better than we were, but again, it’s back to the first-quarter and first-half problems we’ve faced all year long,” he said.
Roxbury showed some offensive spark in the third quarter, netting eight points and holding Kortright to 14, but they were unable to find the basket in the fourth, as the Rams tallied 12 points to post a 55-14 win.
“You can’t get down to good teams because they’re too tough to come back against,” said Sherwood, whose team is 1-14 as it heads into the final week of the regular season.
The Rockets played host to the visiting JayHawks of Jefferson on Tuesday; no score was available at press time. They will travel to face the host Mountaineers at Andes in the final game of the season on Friday night.

Margaretville girls
Despite losing starter Danielle Hull in the opening seconds of Tuesday night’s home competition against visiting Stamford, the host Margaretville Blue Devils gave a solid showing as they posted a 44-30 win over the visiting Indians. Hull went down mere seconds after the opening tip-off with a knee injury, costing the Blue Devils one of their key rebounders.
Erica Faulkner, one of two seniors celebrating senior night, led the Blue Devils with 22 points, nine rebounds and five steals, while fellow senior Michelle O’Reilly pulled in eight rebounds and put up four points.
Following a 9-8 opening quarter in Margaretville’s favor, the Blue Devils opened a lead in the second quarter, tallying 11 points to Stamford’s five to take a 20-9 lead into halftime. They maintained the offensive pressure in the third, outscoring the Indians 8-4, and a three-point edge in the fourth sealed the win for the Blue Devils.
Win the win, the Blue Devils move to 8-8 overall and 5-6 in league play; a cancelled game on Monday means their postseason fate is riding on the result of tonight’s match-up at Hunter-Tannersville. A win would ensure a trip to sectional play for the Blue Devils; a loss would mean they would have to appeal to the school administration to continue on to postseason play.

Andes girls
The Andes girls posted a solid 71-66 win over the visiting Eagles of Downsville last Tuesday. The Mountaineers were led by senior Rachel Andrews, who tallied 27 points and pulled in 10 rebounds; fellow senior Karli Tait had 13 points and 13 rebounds, while Mariah Ruff added 14 points and Ashley Terry had 13 for Andes.
The Andes girls came out firing on all pistons, posting 27 points in the opening quarter to Downsville’s 18 to take an early nine-point lead.
The scoring evened out somewhat in the second, as Downsville held a two-point scoring edge and Andes took a 39-32 lead into halftime. A 16-16 third quarter allowed Andes to maintain its lead, and Downsville was unable to do enough damage in the fourth to strip them of their lead.
The Andes girls dropped a tough 62-48 loss to the host JayHawks of Jefferson on Thursday night.
Despite coming out strong, posting a 14-6 first quarter and taking a three-point lead into halftime, the Mountaineers were unable to hold on to the lead, as Jefferson outscored them 17-11 in the third quarter to take the lead.
Jefferson took the momentum once and for all in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Mountaineers 23-12 to seal the win.
ACS is 7-8 overall as it heads into the final week of the regular season.