Warriors give Connelly positive debut

December 05, 2011|By WILL ROBINSON | Staff Correspondent

Boonsboro earned a 52-48 win over Manchester Valley in coach Sam Connelly’s first  game as the varsity girls coach on Monday, withstanding a late challenge to hold off the Mavericks.

“It’s fun. I love it,” said Connelly of being back in varsity basketball. “The kids play with so much emotion and drive. It’s good to be back at the varsity level after four years of JV.”

Manchester Valley (0-1) used a six-point run to notch a 12-4 lead over Boonsboro (1-0) in the first quarter. The Warriors pulled within three points, sparked by six points by Stephanie Pantos, to move within 14-11 by the end of the first quarter.

Pantos stayed hot in the second — going 3-for-3 from the floor — on her way to a 16-point, 11-rebound night.

“Steph and Shannon (O’Brien) kept us in the game,” said Connelly. “Manchester Valley shot well. They made the extra pass and found the open man, but (Pantos and O’Brien) crashed the boards and gave us a real inside presence.”

O’Brien took advantage by hitting five of eight free throws and grabbed two of her five rebounds in the second quarter. Sarah Bach hit all three of her shots for seven points in the second quarter for Manchester Valley, but Boonsboro held a 30-28 lead at halftime.

The Warriors started quickly in the second half with a 6-2 run. Manchester Valley tied the game at 41 by the end of the quarter, despite a seven-point outburst from O’Brien.

Manchester Valley took a 46-45 lead in the fourth as Boonsboro went ice cold in the fourth quarter, hitting only one of 11 shots. However, Ashlyn Hawbaker slashed through the Mavericks’ zone defense to hit the go-ahead field goal with 2:45 left in the game.

“They switched to a 3-2 zone in the fourth quarter and we forced the ball a little,” said Connelly. “The offensive rebounds we came down with kept us in the game.”

Hawbaker and Pantos each scored one more field goal and Tori Poffenberger hit one of two free throws to seal the game for the Warriors.

“We had two 3-pointers that were literally inches from going in and that could have changed the course of the game,” said Manchester Valley coach Heather DeWees. “Four of my starters played in the soccer state championship this week, so they didn’t have as many practice days as the rest of the team. Hopefully we’ll refine our plays as the year progresses.”

O’Brien finished with 14 points and Hawbaker had 13. Tori Poffenberger tied Pantos with 11 rebounds, as Boonsboro owned a 36-22 edge on the glass.

Boonsboro 52, Manchester Valley 48
Gress 2 0-0 5, Bach 4 0-0 9, Cannon 6 2-4 15, Newman 4 0-0 9, Hochheiser 1 2-2 4, McDonold 2 0-0 4, Houck 0 2-4 2. Totals 23 6-10 48.
Pantos 6 4-6 16, A. Smith 1 1-3 3, Poffenberger 1 1-4 3, Hawbaker 6 0-0 13, Tucker 1 1-1 3, O’Brien 4 6-9 14. Totals 19 13-23 52.
Manchester Valley    14    14    13    8    —    48
Boonsboro    11    19    11    11    —    52
3-point goals — Manchester Valley 4 (Gress, Bach, Cannon, Newman); Boonsboro 1 (Hawbaker). Rebounds — Manchester Valley 22 (Cannon 12); Boonsboro 36 (Pantos, Poffenberger 11 each).

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