Saratoga girls re­bound to drop Shaker

The Saratogian (Saratoga, NY) - - SPORTS - By Stan Hudy shudy@digitalfirstmedia.com @StanHudy on Twit­ter

Af­ter a dis­ap­point­ing loss on the road against ri­val Shenen­de­howa, the Saratoga Springs girls basketball team got back on the right track Tues­day night with a 54-48 win over Shaker in the first game of a var­sity dou­ble­header at home.

There was a no­tice­able dif­fer­ence in the Blue Streaks play Tues­day night, a vast im­prove­ment in their ex­e­cu­tion and body lan­guage af­ter the 69-34 loss at the hands of the Plains­men just three days ago.

“We had a long talk, our team did, af­ter the Shen game about how we need to clean up things like our de­fense,” Saratoga Springs coach Robin Chudy said. “We need to be more ag­gres­sive and that time we did have a bunch of looks at the bas­ket, but other than that we’ve been say­ing our on-ball de­fense needs to be very ag­gres­sive.

“We need to make kids drive to the bas­ket so we can have some help there; we need to not give open shots like we did in the last game. We need to make sure we have a hand in the face and I think mostly tonight we worked very hard on that and then help­ing and switch­ing and be­ing a lot more ag­gres­sive on de­fense.”

The abil­ity to chal­lenge of­fenses has been the bread and but­ter for Saratoga (12-5 Sub­ur­ban Coun­cil, 15-6 over­all) who also avenged a double-over­time loss on the road to the Bi­son (12-4 league, 14-6) over­all in late De­cem­ber.

“We stud­ied the Shen game a lot, the lit­tle things we didn’t care of and we fo­cused on that this week to clean it up, to come out stronger and more ag­gres­sive and bet­ter.”

A late sec­ond quar­ter 12-2 run by Saratoga pro­vided some breath­ing room as the Blue Streaks were able to put its tran­si­tion game into ac­tion, cre­at­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties off of

re­bounds and steals.

“We want to push it, push it, get the ball up the court and then see what hap­pens from there,” Chudy said. “If we have the ball, take the ball to the bas­ket, take it, if not look for our tran­si­tion of­fense where we have post com­ing though and see if we can get some layups and not give up on de­fense, not set­tle for an open shot from them, make them work for it.”

The Blue Streaks were led by ju­nior Kerry Fla­herty’s 16 point and sopho­more Dolly Cairns 13-point, re­spec­tively. Saratoga’s bal­anced at­tack in­cluded Amanda McGinn and Bri­ann Bar­ringer both chip­ping in nine points each with Kara Vam­valis adding seven in the win.

Shaker, who was also routed by Shenen­de­howa a week ago, 66-37, be­fore two home wins against Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake and Niskayuna, were led by Shyla San­ford’s 18-point night along with Ju­lia De­beat­ham chip­ping in 15 in the loss.

The Blue Streaks await their play­off sta­tus Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon when the Sec­tion II com­mit­tee will an­nounce the post-sea­son seeds and play­off sched­ule. Visit www.sarato­gian. com/sports for up­dates, seeds and sched­ules.

STAN HUDY- SHUDY@DIGITALFIRSTMEDIA.COM

Saratoga Springs se­nior Amanda McGinn ooks to hold off Shaker’s Alexan­dra De­beat­ham un­der the bas­ket af­ter a foul shot Tues­day in Sub­ur­ban Coun­cil ac­tion. Feb. 13, 2018

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