By Ted Waddell
ELDRED February 20, 2007 Sometimes losing isn’t such a bad thing, particularly if your coach can make lemonade out of lemons.
“I was impressed with our offense,” said Frank Kean, coach of the Eldred Lady Yellowjackets girls’ varsity basketball team.
“We scored 23 points in the first half, which is the most we’ve had all year,” he added. “We’re improving, and that’s what I’m looking for… the girls are finding their chemistry and the blend of the seven girls is starting to work.”
While Eldred’s team chemistry is improving, with Friday night’s 71-40 loss to visiting Chapel Field in an Orange County Interscholastic Athletic Association (OCIAA) Division VI game, the Lady Yellowjackets’ record is 1-14 overall, 0-5 in Division VI.
Chapel Field (13-3 overall, 5-1 Division VI) spread its scoring attack evenly across the board. The Lady Lions outscored Eldred in each quarter: 18-10, 18-13, 18-5 and 17-12.
Kean noted that the Lady Lions scored 20-some points off the fast break.
“They’re a very explosive team on the fast break, and we couldn’t stop it,” he said.
Double-figure scorers for Chapel Field included Katie Oskum, who posted a game-high 21 points, including four 3-point shots, Grace Hodges, who netted 17 points, and Angel Kelly, who recorded 12 points.
Eldred’s top performers were junior forward Gabby Westfall and senior guard Stephanie Berger. Westfall registered a double-double with 23 points and 15 rebounds, while Berger scored seven points and dished out six assists).
Eldred enjoyed an advantage at the free-throw line. The Lady Yellowjackets made 10-of-17 foul shots (59 percent), while Chapel Field was 3-of-8 (38 percent) at the line.
“I got a little upset at the end of the second quarter when we allowed eight unanswered points within a matter of 30 seconds… we did some real stupid things,” Chapel Field Coach Sal Patane said.
“Eldred is a little light this year, but had we been in a dogfight up by 16 and then go into the locker room up by eight, that bothers me,” he added.
With the Section IX Class D tournament on the horizon, Chapel Field is looking at the possibility of playing a couple of teams which are hoping to knock them off: John A. Coleman Catholic School and S.S. Seward.
“You can’t forget The Family School and Livingston Manor,” said Patane, referring to two other teams that should qualify for the Class D tourney.