Lady Bills hold on for 47-39 victory over Fonda-Fultonville

Johnstown's Allison Morey (20) passes the ball while under pressure from Fonda-Fultonville's Kaleigh Smith (12) and Marilyn Whitcavitch during Friday's non-league game at Warren Street Elementary School. (The Leader-Herald/James A. Ellis)

JOHNSTOWN — The Fonda-Fultonville Lady Braves made the short trip to Warren Street School Friday night for a non-league match-up against the Lady Bills of Johnstown.

The Lady Bills got off to a fast start but had to hold on in the fourth quarter to get a 47-39 win.

“Wins have been hard to come by so we’re very happy with this one,” Johnstown coach Tim Derwin said.

Kaleigh Smith scored to put the Lady Braves on the board first but Anna Lee scored six straight points and Kanako Sasaki made a runner down the lane to give the Lady Bills an 8-2 lead three minutes into the first quarter. On the next Johnstown possession Lee drained a 3-pointer for a nine point lead.

Abigail Lombardoni got a bucket and a foul shot for Fonda-Fultonville before Sasaki scored with 3:42 remaining to make the score 13-5. After another Lombardoni free throw, Abbygail VandeWalker made a lay-up and then .Meghan Mraz hit a three-point shot to push the Johnstown lead to double digits.

Lombardoni scored again and Smith drove through the lane for another basket to cut the lead back to eight but VandeWalker and Jaden Wilson answered with a bucket each to make the score 22-10 at the end of the first quarter.

“We’re a slow starting team,” Fonda-Fultonville coach Flip Boshart said. “It’s a mindset that we have to change”.

In the second quarter the tide changed as the Lady Braves opened with an 11-0 run and held Johnstown to only six points in the quarter.

Stella Williams drove through traffic and laid it in to get Fonda-Fultonville started. Carly Atty nailed a 3-pointer and followed that with another bucket to cut the Lady Bills lead to five with 5:03 remaining in the half. Lombardoni drove down the lane to score and Jillian Wilder added a bucket bringing Fonda-Fultonville to within one point of Johnstown.

The Lady Bills got on the board with just under two minutes to go when Allison Morey hit a 10-foot jumper but Lombardoni tied the game up at 24 apiece with a 3 point shot at the 1:29 mark. Sasaki scored and then made a great bounce pass to Wilson for the lay-in on the fast break to make the score 28-24 at the half.

“They caught fire and we went cold,” Derwin said. “At times it felt like we were behind even though I kept reminding the kids that we were ahead.”

The third quarter saw the Lady Bills bounce back as they outscored Fonda-Fultonville 14-8.

The Lady Braves got another basket and four free throws from Lombardoni and Krystal McSpirit scored when she put back an offensive rebound. Meanwhile, Johnstown got four points from Jesse VanNostrand, five points from Lee, and baskets from VandeWalker, Mraz and Sasaki which led the Lady Bills to a 42-32 lead going into the fourth quarter.

“Our goal was to come out and win the third quarter and we did,” said Derwin.

Fonda-Fultonville had goals of their own.

Boshart said, “Our goal was to hold them to five points or less in the fourth quarter.”

The Lady Braves scored seven straight points to start the final quarter. Lombardoni hit a jumper and then Marilyn Whitcavitch made a jump shot from the middle of the lane. With 1:37 left in the game Lombardoni hit a 3-pointer to cut the lead to three.

Fonda-Fultonville held the Lady Bills scoreless until VanNostrand sunk a free throw with 45.7 seconds left. Fonda-Fultonville had to foul players in order to stop the clock but VanNostrand made four straight foul shots to seal the win for Johnstown with the final score 47-39.

“Credit them. They played well,” Boshart said.

Both coaches indicated that there was an undertone of the game that revolved around the youth that was on the floor for both teams.

Boshart said, “Before the game we said that this might be the youngest match-up in Section 2 tonight with only three combined seniors.” Derwin commented that, “This is a pretty evenly matched group of young kids that play well.”

Fonda-Fultonville (4-4, 3-0) will travel to Cobleskill-Richmondville Tuesday for another non-league match-up,while Johnstown (2-6) will host Hudson Falls on Thursday.

Fonda-Fultonville 39, Johnstown 47

Fonda-Fultonville 10 14 8 7 — 39

Johnstown 22 6 14 5 — 47


Atty 2-0-5; Wilder 1-0-2; Whitcavitch 1-0-2; Smith 2-0-4; Williams 1-0-2; Lombardoni 7-6-22; McSpirit 1-0-2.


Sasaki 3-1-7; VanNostrand 1-7-9; VandeWalker 3-0-6; Morey 1-0-2; Mraz 1-2-5; Lee 6-0-14; Wilson 2-0-4

3 point goals: Fonda-Fultonville 3 (Atty 1; Lombardoni 2); Johnstown 3 (Mraz 1; Lee 2)