TRR photos by Ted Waddell

Evolution: Eldred’s Jissela LaBuda

Sullivan West stings Lady Yellow Jackets

ELDRED, NY — It started on a patriotic note.

The home team’s Kayla Maas kicked off the girls’ varsity game of hoops on Thursday, December 21 between the Lady Yellow Jackets of Eldred and the Sullivan West Lady Bulldogs by singing the “Star Spangled Banner,” penned by Francis Scott Key.

In the “Defense of Fort McHenry,” the amateur poet chronicled the shelling of the fort by British ships of the line on September 14, 1814.

Fast forwarding a few years, instead of bombarding a fort, the teams engaged in a duel at the foul line as both teams stepped up to the free throw line a combined total of 40 times: ECS 6/14 (43%), SW 12/26 (46%).

Now that’s a lot of foul shots, by anybody’s standards.

“But wait, there’s more” for the mathematically inclined, as at the 2:21 mark near the close of the first half, the score stood even-steven at 21-21.

Maybe play the number 21 at the next lotto, and if you strike it rich, remember where you got the winning number. Please.

Sullivan West (4-2) edged the home team 13-10 in the first period, only to get stung by the Lady Yellow Jackets 18-8 in the second frame on the non-league game.

Eldred (2-2) was in the driver’s seat by three points at halftime, 24-21.

In the third period, things began to fall apart for Eldred, as they posted a miserly four points to their opponents’ tally of 16.

The home team edged the Lady Bulldogs by a point in the final frame, 13-12, as Eldred’s Kassandra Weatherly closed out her team’s scoring with a three.

Sullivan West’s Sabrina Martinez iced the cake at the free-throw line, as the Lady Bulldogs nipped Eldred 50-41 at the final buzzer.

ECS’s leading scorers: Kass Weatherly, 12 points including four threes, three of which she posted in the final period; Alaina Gaughan, 11 points including two threes; Sami Clemmons, eight points; and Lenae Kelty drilled a three.

SW: Sabrina Martinez (19), McKinley Bernitt (10), Kelty Farrell (9).

“We came to play… but unfortunately came out a little flat in the second half,” said Eldred coach Ryan Jasper.

Hannah Jennings is captain of the Lady Yellow Jackets.

“I think we played hard,” said the 16-year-old junior.

Goals and objectives?

“We definitely have to work on what we can control… getting better shots off, and trying to get better each day.”

Pat Donovan is leader of the pack for the Lady Bulldogs.

“We played pretty good defense, and all the girls contributed somehow,” he said, adding, “Coach Jasper does a great job with the kids… they’re ready to go all the time.”

The Lady Bulldogs hoopsters are led by a couple of 17-year-old senior co-captains: McKinley Bernitt and LeizelSchlott.

“I think we’ve picked up the pace a lot since the beginning of the season… our goal is to get to the sectionals,” said Schott.

Bernitt said she really, really likes basketball.

“I lose myself in it… when the buzzer goes off, it’s like ‘Wow, it’s over already, where did it go?’.”

Her take on the win?

“I’m really excited about the game… when you’re down by three points at halftime, and then come back with a nine-point lead, it’s a great feeling,” said Bernitt.


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