FARMINGTON — The absence of those short trips to the free-throw line hurt the Mt. Blue Cougars on Monday.
Being a no-show at the foul line allowed Skowhegan to run away with a 70-44 victory over Mt. Blue in a girls’ basketball.
“The problem was we couldn’t get a single call,” Mt. Blue coach Fred Conlogue said. “Because we didn’t get any calls, we didn’t get to the line. Our strength is when we get to the line and we didn’t get many trips there.
“We did pretty good getting offensive rebounds, but we just couldn’t put it back in. We weren’t squared off enough where it didn’t go back up strong enough, and they came out and shot the lights in the third quarter.
“We played with a lot more heart and energy than we did in the third quarter. They just beat us down the floor and made all their 3s (a total of six).”
The Cougars (2-9) remained neck and neck with the Indians (9-3) in the first quarter, with Skowhegan leading 13-12.
But Mt. Blue’s shooting started to sputter and eventually went stale by the third quarter.
The Cougars scored only five points in each of the second and third stanzas. And that’s when the Indians’ shooting and obvious dominance erupted, allowing them to score 28 points.
Mt. Blue finally saw some action at the charity stripe, and sophomore guard Lexi Mittelstadt hit six of seven free throws in the fourth quarter. She ended up scoring the game-high 29 points and dropped in three 3-pointers.
The feisty Indians decided to spread around their wealth on offense, with juniors Annie Cooke and Mariah Dunbar each scoring 18 points. Juniors Sydney Ames added 12 points and Alyssa Everett contributed 11.
“We have a tendency to let the game dictate how we play, I think, and sometimes we start slow and sometimes we don’t,” Skowhegan coach Mike LeBlanc. “Luckily, tonight, we did catch fire in the second half and put it away pretty early.
“They (Cougars) are scrappy. They get after it. I think they rely too much on one player, and we can contain her if we feel the need to.
“Probably Mariah Dunbar played one of her better games — just everything well — good passes, she cut to the basket well. She got that wide-open look. She hit a couple of 3s.”
Mt. Blue sophomore Molly Harmon (22) gets ready to go up for a shot against Skowhegan’s Annie Cooke (21) in a basketball game in Farmington on Monday night.Mt. Blue sophomore guard and captain Lexi Mittelstadt, middle, drives to hoop as she tries to get past Skowhegan’s Alyssa Everett (23) and Mariah Dunbar (34) in a basketball game in Farmington on Monday night.Mt. Blue senior Rebecca Harmon (12) keeps her eye on the ball during a basketball game in Farmington on Monday night.