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Knights leave Warriors' stockings empty

December 23, 2004|by ANDREW MASON

andrewm@herald-mail.com

BOONSBORO - Much like the upcoming holidays, the perennially strong Middletown girls basketball team gave hope this week to Washington County.

Tuesday night, Williamsport led visiting Middletown 25-16 at halftime and 32-31 after three quarters, before the Knights pulled away for a 56-43 victory.

Wednesday night, Boonsboro led Middletown 9-8 after the first quarter. But the Knights didn't wait nearly as long this time to tell the Warriors the truth about Santa.

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With her team trailing 11-10 early in the second period, Middletown's Ellie Vandegrift drained a long jumper to spark an 8-0 run and the Knights never looked back, winning 50-23.

"Their zone (defense) was causing us a little trouble early," Middletown coach Billy Miskell said. "But then we got into our comfort zone and started moving the ball."

And Knights star forward Kristen Waeber finally caught fire. After being held scoreless in the first quarter, Waeber scored eight of her game-high 17 points in the second as Middletown (5-1) took a 26-16 halftime lead.

"The momentum of the game just totally changed," Waeber said. "That was important going into halftime. We had confidence."

The Warriors (4-2) seemed insecure as they were outscored 24-7 in the second half. That probably was largely due to sharpshooter Jessie Ambrose's absence from the Boonsboro lineup. Ambrose served a one-game suspension Wednesday after being ejected Monday during the Warriors' 47-42 victory over Hancock.

"We went 1-for-12 from 3-point area. We were just stone cold all night long," Boonsboro coach Bernie Semler said. "(Ambrose) is our primary outside threat. She's shooting 40 percent from 3-point land.

"Emotionally, the girls were down because Jessie wasn't out there. She lifts the team up."

Alex Baker, who had Boonsboro's only 3, led the team with six points, while Jerica Hewett and Sarah Keyser each had five.

Jill Holian had 10 points, six assists and five steals for the Knights, while Whitney Boyer had seven points and Waeber added 15 rebounds, four steals and three assists.

"(Waeber) is awesome," Semler said. "She's just an awesome post player."

"We have a lot of great players," Miskell said. "But she's the focal point. When she gets a lot of touches, good things happen to us."

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