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Rob Potter | Democrat

Tri-Valley’s Jakki Pugh (30) takes a shot while caught between Eldred defenders Kim Elvin and Sage Owens (14) during the first quarter of Monday night’s OCIAA Division V basketball game at Eldred Central School. The players looking on include T-V’s Kaitlynn Greffrath (11) and Mareena DiMilia (12) and Eldred’s Meaghan Hazen (hidden behind Elvin and Pugh), Sam Ferguson (4) and Emily Bisland, right.

T-V Lady Bears use a fourth quarter surge to defeat Eldred, 58-51

By Rob Potter
ELDRED — February 11, 2011 — Going into Monday night’s Orange County Interscholastic Athletic Association (OCIAA) Division V basketball game, the visiting Tri-Valley Lady Bears and Eldred Yellowjackets were tied for first place in the division standings with identical 4-0 records.
Both teams held the lead and the score was tied on more than one occasion as all of the players tried their best to help their team prevail.
Eldred held a 36-30 advantage at the end of the third quarter.
But in the fourth quarter, the Lady Bears outscored the Lady Yellowjackets by a 28-15 margin on the way to recording a 58-51 victory.
T-V (13-1, 5-0 Div. V) also had to rally from a 29-17 halftime deficit to earn the win.
The Lady Bears began that comeback by using a full-court press in the third period to force many Eldred turnovers.
With 6:31 remaining in the third quarter, Eldred’s Emily Bisland made a jump shot to give her team its largest lead of the game at 35-19.
But T-V went on a 9-0 scoring run during the next four minutes to reduce its deficit to seven at 35-28.
At the 6:40 mark of the fourth quarter, T-V’s Jakki Pugh swished a 3-point shot to cut the Lady Yellowjackets’ lead to 40-37.
Five seconds later, Pugh swished two free throws to make it a one-point game.
The senior guard then evened the score at 40-40 after making the second of two free throws after being fouled while driving to the basket following a steal.
Sage Owens and Meaghan Hazen each made a foul shot during the next minute of play to put Eldred (8-5, 4-1 Div. V) back in the lead at 42-40.
But Pugh tied the score again with 5:28 to go.
With 4:59 displayed on the scoreboard clock, T-V’s Kaitlynn Greffrath made two foul shots to give her team a 44-42 advantage.
The Lady Bears then maintained the lead for the rest of the way.
Owens and Pugh had outstanding individual performances as they were the top scorers for their respective teams. Owens recorded a double-double of a game-high 33 points and 13 rebounds. Pugh had 31 points and shot 76 percent (19 of 25) at the foul line.
Mareena DiMilia added nine points for the Lady Bears and teammates Erin Smith and Greffrath finished the game with seven points and six points, respectively.
T-V Coach John Tenbus credited his players for improving their performance in the second half.
“When we were down 12 at halftime, I told them we would try our press defense and see what happens,” he said.
Tenbus also noted the excellent foul shooting by Pugh and the play of junior forward Erin Smith.
“Erin played great tonight,” Tenbus said. “We count on her for defense and rebounding. The points she scores is a bonus.”
T-V took a 7-0 lead in the opening minutes of the game before Owens scored a basket in the lane with 5:01 to play.
The Lady Yellowjackets took their first lead of the contest when senior guard Kim Elvin drove down the lane, scored a basket and was fouled. She made her free throw to put her team up 11-9 with 2:07 remaining in the first quarter.
Early in the second period, Sam Ferguson swished a 3-pointer to give Eldred a 14-13 advantage.
Owens then scored the next 10 points for the Lady Yellowjackets as they took a 24-15 lead with 3:01 remaining until halftime.
Eldred Coach Jolene Porter noted that defense was the difference in the game.
“Their defense created some issues for us,” she said. “We still ended the third quarter up by six points. But their defense caused some problems for us.
“We lost the momentum we had in the first half and it was hard to get it back,” Porter added.
Elvin finished the game with six points and Ferguson netted five points.
Note: The Lady Bears and Lady Yellowjackets were scheduled to play again last night in Grahamsville in a Div. IV game. The two teams could possibly meet a third time this season in the upcoming Section IX Class C tournament..

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