The Batavia High Varsity Girls’ Basketball Team’s season came to an end tonight at the hands of host Palmyra-Macedon, 58-48, in the quarterfinals of the Section 5 Class B1 Tournament.
The Lady Blue Devils battled back from a 15-point deficit to twice climb within six points in the fourth quarter, but were unable to overcome a shaky first half punctuated by foul trouble and the inability to keep the taller Lady Red Raiders from dominating inside.
Fifth-seeded Batavia finishes with a 14-8 record while No. 4 Pal-Mac advances to the next round with a 17-4 mark.
“We made a lot of mistakes. We didn’t get back (on defense),” Batavia Coach Marty Hein said. “We knew we had to press to try to wear them down, to get them into some foul trouble – which did happen, but we didn’t sprint back hard enough and gave up a lot of easy buckets because we just didn’t communicate.”
Hein also pointed to the foul situation, especially the fact that junior point guard Mackenzie Reigle had to sit all but 19 seconds of the second quarter after picking up her third foul.
“The idea was there, but obviously, we got into foul trouble ourselves,” he said. “Kenzie not playing for a whole quarter is not ever going to be a productive thing for us offensively. Actually, that hurt us offensively and defensively.”
Pal-Mac, behind senior forward Andra Savage’s 11 points, took a 29-18 lead into the locker room.
“We put up only 18 points in that first half, and Kenzie only played the first quarter and maybe 30 seconds of the second quarter,” Hein said. “That’s a killer for us.”
The home team upped the advantage to 43-28 late in the third quarter before hot-shooting junior guard Bryn Wormley led a Batavia rally that closed the gap to 45-36. Wormley had 10 of her game-high 25 points in the quarter.
Batavia employed a full-court press at the outset of the fourth quarter and cut the deficit to 45-39 on a free throw and bucket by senior forward Emma Krolczyk, who had all five of her points in the final frame.
The teams traded baskets until a three-point shot by Wormley – her sixth three-pointer of the game – pulled Batavia within 54-48 with 1:18 to play. That was as close as the Lady Devils got, however, as a layup by sophomore forward Ryley Trail and basket by junior guard Sophie Lyko sealed the victory for Pal-Mac.
Reigle, who fouled out in the closing seconds, ended up with six points (below her 15 ppg average) along with five rebounds and five assists, while sophomore guard Jaylene Dersham also had six points. Junior guards Kennedy Kolb and Tess Barone rounded out the scoring with 4 and 2, respectively.
Savage paced Pal-Mac with 17 points while senior guard Katherine Smyth added 12 and Lyke chipped in with 10.
Hein said he was impressed with the quality of the teams at the top of the Class B1. Entering Friday’s action, No. 1 Waterloo and No. 2 Dansville both were at 18-2, while No. 3 Livonia was at 16-4.
“We knew coming in with the teams that were left in the B1 Class, you needed a B-plus to an A performance every night that you were going to come out on the floor,” Hein said. “With the foul troubles and not getting back (on defense), we didn’t do that B-plus performance.”
Despite the loss, the coach said the season was a pleasurable one.
“Overall, I really love how all the girls were working together. It’s the tightest group that I’ve been with. They work together. It’s not just always about friendship; they care about each other on and off the court. It’s probably one of the best groups that I’ve enjoyed working with,” he said.
Photos by Steve Ognibene.
From top to bottom -- Tess Barone battles for a rebound; Mackenzie Reigle drives to the hoop; Kennedy Kolb goes for a loose ball; Barone attempts a free throw as Jaylene Dursham looks on; Brym Wormley splits the defense for a shot.
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