January 18, 2013

Hornets strong on perimeter in win over Eagles

PLATTSBURGH — Plattsburgh High girls’ basketball coach Joe Staves said from the outset that Thursday’s highly-anticipated rematch with Beekmantown featured two teams with contrasting styles.

One showcased electrifying perimeter play, while the other obtained an intimidating post presence.

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Fortunately for Staves, perimeter play prevailed.

The Hornets (7-3, 6-2), who received contributions in large part from Marle Curle’s season-high 33 points, knocked off previously undefeated Beekmantown 67-56 in Champlain Valley Athletic Conference action.

Plattsburgh High set the tone from the get-go, forcing the Eagles (9-1, 9-1) backcourt into committing mistakes with a full-court press.

“We wanted to create some turnovers and get into transition, while taking (Shannon Ryan) out of the paint on both sides of the floor,” Staves said. “It’s not that she’s just a good offensive player, she’s an outstanding defensive player, too.”

Seven 3-point field goals in the first half helped the Hornets extend their lead to 12 markers at the break. Curle, Cierra Duquette, Kianna Dragoon and Olivia Carlsson were able to generate offense with their shooting touch from behind the arc.

“We had four different players hit 3-pointers in the first half, and I think that put a little pressure on Beekmantown because they couldn’t just put emphasis on guarding (Curle),” Staves said. “Once they began covering other people, (Curle) just took it to the basket and nobody’s going to stop her ability to drive unless they double team.”

Beekmantown used its size advantage in the post, closing the third stanza on a 14-6 run to cut the deficit to seven points with one quarter remaining.

“After a quick timeout, we were able to settle down and regain composure,” Staves said. “We play with a lot of intensity, and I think the kids are able to manage that. Sometimes, it’s difficult at the high school level to transition from pressure defense to a half-court offense and change the tempo. To their credit, they did that (Thursday).”

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