GRAY — For much of the first half Saturday, the York Wildcats tried to shake the Patriots from Gray-New Gloucester.
Meanwhile, Gray-NG spent much of the half chasing, but not quite catching, the Wildcats.
What York couldn’t do in 16 minutes in the first half, it did in about three minutes in the third quarter.
The Wildcats used 12 straight points to break open the lead and never looked back in a 62-36 girls’ basketball win over the Patriots.
“We were trying to do that in the first quarter,” said York coach Rick Clark. “We got off to a good start, but then we got into foul trouble. I had two starters out and I almost took a third one out. So we backed off a little bit and didn’t play as aggressive as we normally do.”
Gray-NG (5-2) had stayed within reach of York through the first half and were only down 31-24 at the half. The first few minutes of the third changed everything.
“We knew we had to come out with a lot of energy,” said Emily Campbell, a senior forward. “They have really good 3-point shooters, and it could be a three-point game by the end of it. So we wanted to come out with a lot of energy, and I think we got into a groove.”
In the first three minutes of the third quarter, Gray-NG shot 0-for-3 and turned the ball over four times. The Patriots finished the quarter 1-for-12 from the floor with six turnovers.
“We said we had to focus and have a lot of energy,” said Campbell. “We came out with that and did a good job of it.”
Campbell led York’s aggressive defense. She scored six points during the 12-0 run and Shannon Todd hit a pair of 3’s that put the lead up to 43-24. Gray-NG didn’t get its first field goal until a Maria Valente leaner with 4:52 left.
“Anytime you have a team like that that shoots so well from the outside, you have to be weary of that,” said Clark. “If it’s a close game, you don’t want them shooting 3’s to win the game. They’re good shooters. So we were around the paint with two girls and let three go out.”
Gray-NG’s Michele Dehetre finished with nine points, all on 3’s. Hayle Cote had a pair of 3’s and seven points.Sammie Wilkins also finished with seven.
The four 3’s in the first half allowed the Patriots to keep close. Marquis MacGlashing led the Wildcats (8-0) with 13 of her game-high 15 points in the first half, including nine in the opening quarter.
York had a 10-3 lead early but a 3 from Cote and a drive by Wilkins late had Gray-NG within 16-14 after the first. York used an 11-2 run to get the lead into double digits. A Ruby Cribby steal made it 31-20 with 2:33 left, but Gray-NG got a 3 from Cote and a free throw from Valente to cut the deficit to 31-24 at half.
“We put them on the line a lot in the first half,” said Clark. “We were reaching. We have to clean that up a little. We can do that with our feet and don’t have to reach.”
Todd and Campbell led York in the second half. Todd had10 of her 13, including a trio of 3’s while Campbell finished with 10 overall.
“Last game we started playing really well as a team,” said Campbell, whose team plays Lake Region next week. “This game we were playing well and got in that groove. Everyone on our team was chipping in.”
York finished the third up 47-28 and cruised the rest of the way. Gray-NG got within 54-36 before the Wildcats finished the game with eight straight.