By Rob Potter
LIVINGSTON MANOR December 25, 2007 Last Wednesday night’s Orange County Interscholastic Athletic Association (OCIAA) Division VI girls’ basketball game between The Family School and host Livingston Manor got off to a slow start.
Both the Lady Falcons and Lady Wildcats had trouble adjusting to the other team’s press defense. As a result, both squads committed a few turnovers and missed some shots.
At the end of the low-scoring first quarter, the Lady Falcons held a 7-4 lead.
As the game progressed, both teams improved their play on offense.
Manor’s offense proved to be better, however, as the Lady Wildcats went on to post a 38-27 victory.
The Family School (2-2, 1-1 Division VI) enjoyed a 12-11 lead at halftime. Midway through the third period, Betty Weaver swished a 3-pointer to give the Lady Falcons a 20-13 advantage.
But Manor (4-0, 1-0 Division VI) quickly erased its deficit. With 4:09 remaining in the stanza, Marissa Diescher knocked down a 3-point shot from the corner to pull the Lady Wildcats to within two points at 20-18. At the 1:45 mark, Manor’s Natalia Cruz scored to tie the game at 20-20.
About 20 seconds later, Claire Meehan of The Family School stole the ball, dribbled downcourt and was fouled while attempting a layup. She then made one of her free throws to give the Lady Falcons a 21-20 lead.
With 42 seconds remaining in the frame, Tatiana Brown made a 3-pointer to give Manor a 23-21 advantage.
The Lady Wildcats gradually added to that lead in the fourth quarter on their way to the 11-point win.
“We were able to handle their press and then we started to take care of the ball better and shoot better,” Manor Coach Kevin Clifford said.
He noted that his team’s performance on the other end of the court was also important.
“We played very good defense tonight,” Clifford said. “Defense was the key to the win.”
While noting that all of the Lady Wildcats had a good game, Clifford especially noted Brown’s performance.
“Tatiana Brown played very well tonight,” he commented. “Every game, someone new has stepped up for us and scored some key points, which is very nice.”
Leading Manor to victory were Diescher and Angela Trotti. Diescher scored a game-high 17 points, while Trotti had six points.
Cruz and Brown each added five points for the Lady Wildcats.
“In the third quarter we came out and played OK,” Family School Coach Carlton Williams said. “We played very sloppy in the fourth quarter. If we could have played better in the fourth quarter, it might have been a different game.
“I thought Manor played really well,” Williams added.
The Lady Falcons were paced by Mary Schmeider, who had 10 points, and Joanna Greb, who recorded eight points.