December 30, 2013

HIGH SCHOOL GIRLS BASKETBALL: Oak Hill gets hot in 2nd half, beats Hall-Dale

Raiders pressure rattles Bulldogs

By Gary Hawkins ghawkins@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

FARMINGDALE — Oak Hill girls basketball coach Tom Morong was disappointed in his team’s slow start against Hall-Dale on Monday night so he turned his players loose in the second half.

“We needed to be more aggressive,” Morong said. “We started out half-court man-to-man. Half the kids looked like they were asleep out there. We just said we’re going to go get them, run and jump, hedge, double when we can and be aware of passing lanes.”

The Raiders opened the second half with an 11-2 run and the Bulldogs never recovered as Oak Hill earned the 50-32 win. Oak Hill is 4-3 in Mountain Valley Conference play, Hall-Dale is 3-3.

Oak Hill forced nine turnovers in the third quarter, which began with the teams tied at 18 and ended with the Raiders on top 34-26.

“When we picked up our defense, our offense came a little better,” Oak Hill junior Danielle Samson said. “It came off our press.”

Oak Hill freshman Brianna Mulherin scored 10 of her game-high 14 points in the quarter while Sadie Goulet capped the separating run with a long 3-pointer from the left side. The Bulldogs’ problems were exacerbated by foul trouble. When junior Nicole Pelletier left the floor with her third foul, Hall-Dale had difficulty getting the ball up the floor, committing seven turnovers in 3 minutes and 13 seconds.

“We just panicked a little bit and started making the same mistakes over and over again,” Hall-Dale coach Brandon Terrill said.

The Bulldogs sustained more foul trouble when 6-foot-1 center Allison Crockett picked up her fourth late in the quarter in an attempt to block a shot by Mulherin. The Raiders took full advantage, going to the 5-foot-10 Mulherin as soon as Crockett left the floor. Oak Hill put the game away with 11 straight points to open the fourth quarter, running the lead to 45-26. The quick pace hurt Hall-Dale in more ways than one as they rushed some shots when they got the ball over half-court.

“We’ve struggled some against good teams, trying to figure it out,” Terrill said.

The Bulldogs were at their best in the second quarter. Trailing 15-9 at one point, they closed the period with a nine point run, getting four points from sophomore Dani Sweet and five from Pelletier (10 points). Hayley Marshall (11) kept the Raiders in the game with five points, including two straight steals for layups.

Crockett finished with six points, nine rebounds and two blocked shots while Mulherin grabbed 10 boards in addition to her 14 points.

Gary Hawkins — 621-5638ghawkins@centralmaine.comTwitter: @GaryHawkinsKJ
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