Lady ‘Cats Fall To Weirton Madonna, Lady Hornets
Coming off of their first win of the season, the Paden City Lady Wildcats ran into a couple of hurdles in Mason-Dixon Conference action.
Despite receiving double-double efforts on both nights by standout Alli Bertozzi, the ‘Cats were unable to clear those hurdles while dropping contests to Weirton Madonna and Hundred in Paden City.
The Lady ‘Cats welcomed Weirton Madonna to Bob Burton Gymnasium first on Saturday. The Lady Blue Dons quickly made themselves at home jumping to a hasty 15-point lead after one quarter and a 28-point lead at halftime at 39-11.
Defensively, Madonna shut down Paden City, allowing only two players to score in the first half. Bertozzi scored nine of her game-high 14 points during that time period while the only other player to score was Erica Sapp with her only two points coming in the initial eight minutes.
Offensively the Blue Dons were just as effective coming at Paden City from all angles. By halftime, they had eight players in the scoring column with three reaching double figures.
Paden City would fair better in the second half as Shauna Durant and Amanda Tallman aimed true on some of their field goal attempts. Durant finished with six points and Tallman tallied five.
Amanda Heasley added five points and Amber Palmer scored two. Bertozzi pulled down an astounding 18 rebounds and added four steals.
Still, Madonna was able to keep the pressure on and went on to win the game 59-34.
Against Hundred, the story was drastically different. This time, it was free throw shooting that doomed the Lady Wildcats. Paden City made 20 of 42 free throws, just 48 percent, in a 12 point loss to their Wetzel County rival.
“That’s basically what it boils down to. If you make your foul shots you win your ball games,” said Coach Kelly Sine. “It was almost an exact duplicate of the game out at Hundred.”
Paden City started out well, taking the first quarter 11-9 and going into halftime tied 19-19. Unfortunately they weren’t able to get into a rhythm offensively as they went to the line 20 times in the first half. Bertozzi was Hundred’s main threat as she scored three of the ‘Cats four field goals and went to the line 12 times on top of that. She had eight points in the first quarter and six points in the second.
The Hornets used the halftime break to their advantage with a strong third quarter led by Nancy Cumberledge and her four baskets for eight points.
A Paden City three by Sasha Newson and a basket on the block by Amy Toman kept them close, but in addition to Cumberledge, Jordyn Gorby was too much for the ‘Cats to handle.
Gorby scored 14 of her team-high 20 points in the second half to lead the Hornets down the stretch.
In the meantime, the free throw woes continued for the Wildcats as they shot only 40 percent in the second half. Hundred would take advantage and outscoring the Wildcats 17-9 in the third quarter and 21-17 in the fourth for a 57-45 victory.
Bertozzi had a game high 23 points and barely missed the 20 mark in rebounds with 19. Durant and Toman both finished with six, Tallman scored four, Newson with three, Dominique Craft had two and Amanda Heasley added one. Tallman added five rebounds and four steals.
Macy Woods finished with 13 points for Hundred. Cumberledge finished with 10, Chelsea Kuhn scored seven, Tayla Simpson added three, and both Lindsay Burley and Raven McDiffitt finished with two.
According to Sine, it was an extremely physical ball game, one in which he thinks the crowd got its money’s worth. As a result, Paden City got into foul trouble and had to play some underclassmen.
“The freshmen got a good idea of what it’s like to play with the game on the line, and that will get them ready for sectionals,” Sine said.