Press-Republican

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March 1, 2014

Moriah remains perfect, claims Class D title

PLATTSBURGH — Moriah jumped ahead 17-1 at the end of the first quarter and never looked back, clobbering Elizabethtown-Lewis 46-26 in the Section VII Class D girls’ basketball championship Friday night at the Plattsburgh State Field House.

The Vikings wasted no time to start the contest, using an 8-0 run out of the gate to gain the early advantage before going on a 9-0 run to close out the first quarter.

After poor shooting from the Lions in the first frame, they found some more consistency in the second and held even with Moriah throughout the quarter.

“We got to within 12 with about three minutes to go in the second quarter,” Lions head coach Don Ratliff said. “That was my goal, to get within 12.”

Still behind by a 28-12 deficit, Ratliff’s squad fell behind even further to begin the third frame, falling as far back as 23 points before closing the gap to just 15 thanks to six points in the third quarter from Lily Whalen.

However, the lead would be more than enough for the girls from Moriah. The Vikings would outscore Elizabethtown-Lewis 8-3 in the final quarter to seal the victory.

Lauren Cross, who scored a game-high 14 points and knocked down four 3-pointers in the win for Moriah, said the early lead took a lot of the pressure off her team.

“It made it so much easier,” Cross said. “Our team just pulled through and we worked hard.”

The Vikings also got double-digit performances from Madison Stahl and Sarah Slattery, with both players scoring 11 points apiece — Slattery also grabbed 14 rebounds. Caitlin Pelkey dished out nine assists.

Jasmin Barnes (7) and Whalen (13) paced the Lions, dropping a combined 20 points in the loss. However, Moriah coach Erica Slattery said her team’s ability to contain that duo was a big key in the victory.

“My kids did an awesome job shutting down Jasmin and Lily,” she said. “We knew that they were going to have to, and we were able to come out and play well defensively.”

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