Girls knock off Pates
On Tuesday night at Pete Schneider Gymnasium, the Konkrete Kids girls basketball team looked to follow up their 92-67 thrashing of a previously undefeated Pleasant Valley squad with a win over a two-loss, defending District 11 champion Freedom team.
The Northampton fans held their collective breath as a last-second Freedom heave was off target, preserving a hard-fought, 58-57 win.
The Kids had a tough first quarter, going just 3-for-13 from the field and getting badly out-rebounded on the defensive end. The Patriots took advantage of the second shot opportunities to seize a 16-11 lead after the period.
The Kids found their shooting touch in the second quarter, making 8-of-13 field goal attempts. Victoria Keenan knocked down a three-pointer with 2 seconds left in the half to cut the Freedom lead to a single point at 30-29.
A Gabby Demchak basket with 3:50 left in the third period gave Northampton it first lead since the score was 9-7 in the first quarter. The teams scored 6 points apiece in the final stretch of the third and the Kids took a 42-40 lead into the final stanza.
The Patriots scored the first 6 points of the final period to retake the lead. Northampton scored the next 5, culminating with a Keenan and-one, to go back on top with 5:22 left in the game. The game went back and forth with neither team able to extend the lead beyond 2 points. After Freedom hit 1-of-2 free throws to tie the game at 54-54 with 56 seconds left, head coach Jeff Jacksits called a timeout to plan the endgame.
A flurry of Freedom fouls put the Kids into the bonus and freshman Kylie Gilliard on the free throw line with 35 seconds left, shooting a 1-and-1. Gilliard’s only two shots of the game put Northampton on top. Keenan added another pair of free throws with 20 seconds remaining, which was enough to withstand a Patriot 3 with 6 seconds left.
Keenan led the Kids with an efficient 25 points on 4-for-7 from three, 5-for-7 from two, and 3-for-3 from the line. Jenna Rogers added 15 points and pulled down 11 rebounds. Morgan Sterner chipped in 8 points and 9 rebounds.
Jacksits was happy that his team was able to get a win when they were having an off night.
“Freedom is well-coached and they’re quick,” he said. “Our girls were flat-footed in the first half. I think they out-rebounded us by a ton. I was proud that the girls had a great resolve in the second half and fought through it.”
The win puts Northampton at 10-2 on the season and at the top of the District 11 6A power rankings. Next up for the Kids is a Friday night game at Dieruff (2-9), followed by a home Saturday matinee at the Middle School against East Stroudsburg North (4-6).
A trip to Easton (6-5) on Tuesday precedes the final stretch of the season which consists of 6 games against Skyline Division foes.