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Middletown girls down Williamsport

December 16, 2000

Middletown girls down Williamsport



By BILL STERNER / Staff Correspondent


WILLIAMSPORT - The Middletown girls basketball team is a throwback to a different era when teamwork really mattered, when moving without the ball, setting screens and playing defense was enough to conquer even a faster opponent.

Well, being old-fashioned paid off for coach Kara Nelson's Knights Friday night at Williamsport.

Danielle Costello scored 19 points while nine Middletown players got in the book as the Knights held a speedy Williamsport team at arm's length most of the evening to come away with an 67-51 Monacacy Valley Athletic League win.

And while Williamsport was able to stay close behind the stellar performance of marquee player Brooke Weimer, a combination of Wildcat jitters and Middletown inside dominance allowed the Knights to pull away in the second half.

"We played great," Nelson said. "After last night's performance (a loss to Thomas Johnson), I didn't know what to expect."

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But what unfolded in front of Nelson was a Williamsport team that played solid defense the entire game but became a little anemic on offense, especially in the third quarter.

"I think we wore them down just a little, especially with our advantage inside," Nelson said. "Obviously, we are going to try to use our height as an advantage every time we play."

Middletown's Costello at 6-foot-1 towered over the smaller, less experienced Wildcats underneath. Costello and teammates Aubrey Pfau and Katie Moore enjoyed multiple putbacks in the paint, but it was Costello who did the majority of the damage.

"(Costello) played extremely well tonight," Nelson said. "She came alive on offense."

"We got a little tired on offense," Williamsport coach Curtis Graff said. "With the exception of Brooke (Weimer), we are very young out there. We lost our poise a little against their defense."

But it was the Wildcat's defense that put them back in the game in the second quarter when it appeared Middletown was literally running away with it.

A three-point play by Sara Taylor was followed by a pair of layups off the fast break by Weimer. Soon, the press seemingly stalled the Knights on offense and Williamsport closed out the half with a 13-0 run to pull to within 35-31.

But a 10-foot jumper and a 3 by Middletown's Crystal Shafer to open the second half put the Wildcats in a hole again.

Both teams seemed to be in the Christmas spirit to start the second half as Middletown handed the ball to the Wildcats on six staight trips down the floor.

But Williamsport couldn't cut into the Knights lead, one time failing to score on a 4-on-1 fastbreak.

"I'm not happy we lost, but I am very pleased with how we played," Graff said. "We did a great job staying with them, and we will only get better."

"Our rebounding was great tonight," Nelson said. "We certainly didn't look like the team that played last night."

Middletown 67, Williamsport 51


MIDDLETOWN (67)

House 5, Shafer 10, Mannis 8, Waeber 8, Pidgley 2, Warner 2, Moore 5, Pfau 8, Costello 19. Totals 31 7-8 67

WILLIAMSPORT (51)

Miller 2, Plotner 4, Taylor 8, Pulieri 9, Sanders 3, Ross 7, Weimer 18. Totals 19 13-25 51.

Middletown23121517-67

Williamsport1516713-51

Three-point goals - Middletown 2 (Shafer 2). JV - Middletown, 60-16 (M: Jill Martin 12 points, Amber Holian 11 points).

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