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Johnson Motors - 877-816-0659
Big third quarter propels Lady Vikings over Damsels
Saturday, December 8, 2012
By Andy Stine Sports Writer
FLINTON - First games are usually determined by who can control their nerves throughout the contest. It was apparent there were butterflies from many players on both teams in the opening minutes between the Moshannon Valley and Glendale girls basketball teams.
After the first half, the Lady Vikings calmed down and played more fundamental basketball, outscoring the Damsels 15-2 in the third period. The big quarter helped Glendale defeat Mo Valley, 39-20, on the first day of the Glendale Tip-Off Tournament.
"I think for the first game in the first half, I didn't like how we played," said Lady Viking head coach John Matchock. "But it's the first game and you're going to have those first-game jitters and everything.
"In the second half, we started to play a lot better. I was happy with our beginning of the second half. We started to tail off for a bit. But overall, for a first game, like I told the girls in the locker room, that's probably 50 percent of what we can play. Hopefully, we'll come out tomorrow and play closer to 100 percent."
"We were nervous from the get-go," said Mo Valley head coach Van Cornish. "That was my big worry. They came out just way too nervous. We made too many mistakes in the first half and got down. With a young team like that, you expect that. The biggest thing was just trying to get them to calm down and play. It was just sloppy and too many turnovers and too many bad passes. It's stuff that we have to correct over the season. We have a long way to go."
Leading by eight at halftime, Glendale came out firing and scored on its first two possessions on a Katelyn Matthews lay-in and a trey from the corner from Paige Potter. Later in the period, Matthews came through on a bucket and was fouled on her way up to spark the Glendale run.
Matthews finished her night with a team-high 17 points for the Lady Vikings.
"She was playing tough inside," said Matchock. "As soon as she got the ball inside, Mo Valley was collapsing on her. She didn't take all of her shots underneath because she was getting hit, but she did a good job. For the first game, you're going to have those jitters when you catch the ball. It's just something you have to work at."
"She did really well," said Cornish of Matthews. "She was hurting us inside. We were trying to do things that would take her away with the zone. We ended up switching over to man to see if we could stop her a little better. I think we did a little better in man than the zone."
The Damsels had one of their few bright spots of the night in the fourth quarter in freshman Hannah Kitko. Kitko splashed Mo Valley's only 3-pointer of the night in the period and sparked a 6-0 run for the Damsels.
Cassidy Noel got a bucket to break the Mo Valley rally. The Vikings also cashed in on a pair of free throws from Noel and Ashley Reed to end the game.
Points were hard to come by in the opening minutes of the game as the Damsels' Emily Smith got the first bucket of the game with just over four minutes remaining in the first quarter. Smith also got a point on a free throw, but that was all Mo Valley could manage in the first quarter.
Matthews scored five of Glendale's seven points in the stanza.
"They all played a little bit down and tried not to rush everything," said Matchock. "In the first half, they were just rushing and rushing and they weren't getting set up for shots. We talked about that at halftime. ‘Just take your time, get set up for your shot and then take the shot.'
"They did a lot better in the second half. And you have to credit Mo Valley for the first half. They were playing scrappy, too. Nothing was coming easy tonight, but we were able to find our way through it."
"In the locker room, we just talked about calming down. We wanted to fastbreak, but we didn't have the fastbreak. We just needed to take our time with our passing. In the second half, we did. We got some good looks underneath. Caitlin Kimberly made some nice passes."
Up 15-10 with just under a minute left in the first half, the Lady Vikings got a free throw from Katie Kutruff. On the Damsels' next possession, Glendale forced a turnover and passed the ball down the court to Matthews, who scored on a layup just before the buzzer sounded.
Kitko finished the game with seven points for the Damsels, while Emily Kolesar chipped in with five.
"She's just a player," said Cornish of Kitko. "She's a great shooter. She can handle the ball a little bit, but it's her shot and her movement. She works hard in the offseason. She goes to camps in different places. She has a lot of different moves she can use.
"She has a good shot when she gets it off. She's still young and she's still prone to mistakes, but we're expecting good things from her."
"They have a good coach and they're young," said Matchock of Mo Valley. "They're obviously going to have some mistakes. We talked about this before the game when we watched the film from last year and we saw them play in Philipsburg in the fall. They're scrappy. They play hard. When they get down, they're not just going to lay down for you. You have to give credit to their kids, too."
In the first game of the tournament, Juniata Valley squeaked by Williamsburg, 42-35 in overtime.
Glendale (1-0) will play in tonight's championship game against the Lady Hornets at 7:30, while the Damsels (0-1) will take on Williamsburg in the consolation game at 6.

Moshannon Valley-20
Smith 1 1-2 3, Stodart 1 0-0 2, Kolesar 2 1-2 5, H. Kitko 3 0-0 7, Swoope 0 1-6 1, K. Kitko 0 0-0 0, Matchock 1 0-0 2, Kronenwetter 0 0-0 0, M. Kitko 0 0-0 0. Totals: 8 3-10 20.
Peterson 3 0-0 6, Potter 1 0-0 3, Noel 1 2-2 4, Kimberly 0 0-2 0, Matthews 7 3-5 17, McMurray 1 0-0 2, Kutruff 1 1-2 3, Reed 1 2-2 4, Ricketts 0 0-0 0, Fowler 0 0-0 0, McMillen 0 0-0 0, Johnston 0 0-0 0, Plummer 0 0-0 0. Totals: 15 8-13 39.
Three-pointers: H. Kitko; Potter.
Score by Quarters
Moshannon Valley 3  7   2  8-20
Glendale              7 11 15 6-39

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