BROADALBIN - Both South Glens Falls and Broadalbin-Perth came into Thursday's Foothills Council girls basketball game on a roll.
South High had won three straight games, including two one-point victories over Queensbury, while Broadalbin-Perth came in on a four-game win streak that included an emotional league win over Johnstown on Monday night.
The Bulldogs' inside game proved to be the difference Thursday as Shannon Higgins and Alexis Smith combined for 30 points to lead South Glens Falls to a 61-40 victory over the Lady Patriots.
Broadalbin-Perth’s Kaitlin Wood is surrounded by South Glens Falls players as she battles for an offensive rebound during Thursday’s Foothills Council game at Broadalbin-Perth High School. (The Leader-Herald/James A. Ellis)
"We had four very good games in a row and but came out a little flat tonight," Broadalbin-Perth coach Mike Magliocca said. "Maybe we were a little anxious because we weren't sure if Kaitlin [Wood] was playing tonight or not. Emotionally we were not ready but that is why they are the fifth rated team in Section II for large schools. They are a smart team that moves the ball well and gets it into their post players."
Wood suffered a shoulder injury in Monday's victory over Johnstown and whether she played was a game-time decision. She got the start and led the Lady Patriots' scoring with 15 points.
"Kaitlin Wood sucked it up and played a very good game tonight," Magliocca said. "We were just off a little bit and it was just one of those nights that are hard to explain. We didn't want to get into our offense and when we did get into our offense we would throw it to the wrong person. It was just one of those games."
The Bulldogs (8-2 overall, 4-1 Foothills) jumped out to a comfortable lead with a 10-0 game-opening run.
The Lady Patriots put their first points on the board with 1:24 left in the first quarter when Keiley Gifford laid in a pass from Katie Herba. Rachel Orapello added a 3-pointer for B-P in the final minute to cut South High's lead to 11-5 at the end of the first period.
Broadalbin-Perth (6-4 overall, 1-4 Foothills) closed the gap to three, 13-10, early in the second period with baskets from Orapello and Gifford, while Wood added a free-throw.
The Bulldogs went back to their reliable inside game with Sydney Coon driving the lane and either taking it to the hoop or dishing off to Smith or Higgins in the low post. Smith and Higgins accounted for eight unanswered points as South High surged ahead 21-10 before Gifford and Wood hit free throws to make it 21-13.
Coon and Kasey O'Brien delivered four points apiece as the Bulldogs closed out the half on an 8-3 run to carry a 29-16 lead into the locker room.
South High continued to roll after the break, only this time from the outside as Coon and Mallory Celeste connected from behind the 3-point arc to help extend the lead to 37-18.
Wood stepped up her game in the third period, hitting for a pair of 3-pointers, a basket and a pair of free throws, but the Bulldogs remained steady, outscoring B-P 19-16 in the period to take a 48-32 lead into the final period.
Although the Lady Patriots were a perfect 6-for-6 from the free-throw line in the final eight minutes, Christa Decker provided the lone field goal in the period for B-P as South High closed out the 61-40 league win.
"That is probably the best team we have seen at the low post this year with those two girls [Smith and Higgins] and then to have those three other girls [Coon, Celeste and O'Brien] who can hit 3-pointers that is a very dangerous team," Magliocca said. "They had it all going offensively tonight. We are a pretty good zone defensive team but obviously tonight they had all the answers and we didn't. We just need to regroup and get ready for next Friday against Hudson Falls."
Wood finished with 15 points for Broadalbin-Perth, while Gifford and Orapello added seven points apiece
Smith finished with a double-double of 12 points and 11 rebounds for South High. Higgins added 18 points and Coon finished with 14 on the night.
South Glens Falls 61, Broadalbin-Perth 40
South Glens Falls11 18 19 13 - 61
Broadalbin-Perth5 11 16 8 - 40
South Glens Falls
Buser 2-0-4, Celeste 2-0-6, Coon 5-2-14, Higgins 8-2-18, O'Brien 3-0-7, Smith 6-0-12. Totals: 26-4-61.
Decker 1-0-2, Dickson 1-0-2, Gifford 2-3-7, Herba 1-0-3, Orapello 3-0-7, Traver 1-0-2, Westfall 0-2-2, Wood 3-7-15. Totals: 12-12-40.
3-point goals: South Glens Falls 5 (Celeste 2, Coon 2, O'Brien); Broadalbin-Perth 4 (Wood 2, Orapello, Herba).