Sullivan County Democrat
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Democrat Photo by Rob Potter

TRI-VALLEY’S HEATHER Bachmann keeps her eyes on the ball as Ellenville’s Lottie Stuart attempts to block her path to the hoop in Saturday’s tournament final.

Ellenville Whips T-V Hard

By Rob Potter
GRAHAMSVILLE — December 5, 2000 – The Ellenville girls’ basketball team wasted little time in setting the tone for the championship game of the Tri-Valley Girls’ Basketball Tournament on Saturday afternoon.
The Lady Devils used a 17-0 run at the end of the first quarter en route to a 65-24 thrashing of host Tri-Valley to claim the tourney title.
Ellenville’s Jessica Lewis scored inside with 4:40 remaining in the opening quarter to knot the game at 6-6. Then Lewis and her teammates ripped off 17 consecutive points to take a commanding 23-6 lead at the end of the quarter.
The Ellenville run continued twenty seconds into the second quarter as Lewis grabbed an offensive rebound and put the ball back up and in. But Tri-Valley’s Heather Bachmann connected on a short jumper seconds later to quell the Ellenville streak.
Unfortunately for Bachmann and her Lady Bear teammates, the Lady Devils began scoring again and claimed a 37-12 lead at the halftime break.
One key to the Ellenville (2-0) surge was its aggressive, pressure defense that led to several Tri-Valley (1–1) turnovers that subsequently translated into easy Lady Devil baskets. The other key was Lewis.
“She was on fire in that first half,” said Ellenville coach Mike Guiney, whose squad reached the title game after beating Eldred 56-43 on Friday night. “When she’s on, we really have a lot of success.”
Lewis, one of several Ellenville players returning from last year’s team that captured the Section IX — Class C title, led all scorers with 22 points. Teammates Lottie Stuart and Samantha Ellis added 14 and seven points, respectively.
When asked about positive aspects of the contest from her team’s standpoint, Tri-Valley coach Karen Furman pondered the question for only a couple of seconds.
“I thought we did a decent job of rebounding,” Furman replied. “Of course they didn’t miss too many shots today.”
Despite the loss, Furman is confident her team will bounce back.
“This is only the second game of the season and the team is still trying to get everything together,” Furman said of her Lady Bears, who won their first game of the 2000-01 season Friday night, outlasting Delaware Valley 37-35 in the tournament’s semifinals. “We have a lot of girls who played on the junior varsity team last season. The team is still getting to know each other.”
Bachmann led Tri-Valley with 13 points, while Megan Sheeley netted five points. Bachmann and Sara Alexander each grabbed five rebounds and Sheeley had five steals in the contest.
The Other Games
In the consolation game, Eldred defeated Sullivan West/Delaware Valley, 40-36.
Sullivan West/DV, however, held a slim 17-15 advantage at halftime and pushed its lead to 20-15 forty seconds into the third quarter when Calley Sander swished a three-point shot.
But a layup by Eldred’s Erin Donnelly four minutes later gave the Lady Yellow Jackets a 23-22 advantage. Eldred (1–1) never lost that lead, pushing it to as many as eight points in the final quarter.
“To DV’s credit, they came out to play,” Eldred coach Frank Kean commented. “Fortunately we had enough talent to hang on and get the win.”
Leading Eldred to victory were Christine Lizzi, who scored 14 points, Erin Donnelly (12 points) and Stacie Blaut (eight points).
SW/DV coach Patti Roche was happy with how her team played — despite what the scoreboard might have displayed.
“There was a difference between last night and today,” said Roche, referring to her team’s 37-35 loss to Tri-Valley. “We played better today, much better.”
Sander led all SW/DV (0-2) scorers with 14 points. Alicia Peters added 11 points for the Lady Eagles.
Lewis was chosen Most Valuable Player by the coaches and tournament officials, while teammate Dottie Young was tabbed as the Defensive Player of the Tournament.
The All-Tournament team consisted of Bachmann, Donnelly, Sander, Sheeley and Ellenville’s Desi Montanez.

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