Lady Braves run ends in finals

Fonda-Fultonville's Abby Lombardoni (15) goes up for a shot over Mechanicville's Taylor Grayson during the Section II Class B championship game at Hudson Valley Community College in Troy. (The Leader-Herald/Paul Wager)

TROY — Halfway through Saturday’s Section II Class B championship game the Fonda-Fultonville girls basketball team found itself with a 22-19 lead over Mechanicville.

Having knocked off three straight higher seeds to reach the title contest, the 13th-seeded Lady Braves were 16 minutes from another improbable victory – this time over second-seeded Mechanicville.

However, the Red Raiders shook off their slow start, outscoring FFCS 37-21 in the second half to claim a 56-43 victory.

“We made some mistakes in the second half,” Fonda-Fultonville coach Flip Boshart said. “Chalk it up to [Mechanicville] being ready to go.”

Amy DiSiena, who was named the Class B Tournament’s Most Valuable Player, led the second-half charge for Mechanicville, scoring all of her team-high 14 points in the second half.

Fonda-Fultonville's Alyssa Duval (4) puts up a shot over Mechanicville's Taylor Grayson (20) and Maddie Shakow (24) during the Section II Class B championship game at Hudson Valley Community College in Troy. (The Leader-Herald/Paul Wager)

Charli Goverski finished with 13 points for the Red Raiders, while Jada Brown added 11 points.

Abigail Lombardoni had 14 points for FFCS, while Marilyn Whitcavitch added nine points.

Both teams struggled out of the gates offensively, combining for just eight points over the first 6:12 of the first half.

FFCS outscored the Red Raiders 7-3 in the final 1:48 of the opening quarter to take an 11-7 lead.

Mechanicville took its first lead of the game at 12-11 with 5:16 left in the second quarter after a 3-pointer by Taylor Grayson and a basket by Chloe Goverski.

Fonda-Fultonville's Lyndsay Lombardoni (0) drives past Mechanicville's Amy DiSiena (21) during the Section II Class B championship game at Hudson Valley Community College in Troy. (The Leader-Herald/Paul Wager)

The Lady Braves responded with a 11-2 surge to grab a 22-14 lead with 2:08 left in the opening half.

Whitcavitch accounted for five of the 11 points for Fonda-Fultonville.

Mechanicville scored the final five points of the first half to trail 22-19 at the break.

“[Mechanicville] didn’t shoot well in the first half and we held them to one shot most of the time,” Boshart said. “That’s how we got the lead. We struggled in the second half.”

The Red Raiders got going quickly after the break, using a 12-0 run to start the second half.

“In the second half, we didn’t rebound well,” Boshart said. “[Mechanicville] is an impressive team.”

DiSiena scored six points in the outburst for Mechanicville, while Brown had four as the Red Raiders took a 31-22 lead with 4:18 left in the third quarter.

Fonda-Fultonville pulled to within 38-32 with 21 seconds left in the third after a 3-pointer by Lombardoni, only to have DiSiena score at the buzzer to make it 40-32 after three quarters.

The Lady Braves started the final quarter with a basket by Lyndsay Lombardoni and a pair of free throws from Abby Lombardoni to make it 40-36 with 7:11 to play.

Mechanicville didn’t allow Fonda-Fultonville to get any closer, using a 10-2 burst to stretch its led to 50-38.

“In the second half, we didn’t rebound well,” Boshart said. “[Mechanicville] is an impressive team.”

From there, the Red Raiders maintained a double-digit advantage on their way 56-43 win and their first sectional title since 1989.

“This is a 13-point loss in the sectional finals for a group not expected to be here,” Boshart said. “I’m proud of them.”

The Lady Braves had plenty to be proud of after knocking off the No. 1, No. 4 and No. 5 seeds on their way to the Class B title game.

Mechanicville (17-7) advances to face Section VII champion Northeastern Clinton in Wednesday’s subregional game at Plattsburgh State at 6 p.m.

Fonda-Fultonville finished its season with an 18-7 overall record.

“It’s incredible,” Boshart said. “I’m just proud of them. I’m happy for them and happy for the community. This was big for us. Hopefully, it’s the start of a trend.”

Mechanicville 56, Fonda-Fultonville 43

Mechanicville 7 12 21 16 — 56

Fonda-Fultonville 11 11 10 11 — 43

Mechanicville

Cha. Goverski 4-4-13, DiSiena 6-2-14, Grayson 1-0-3, Brown 4-3-11, Joseph 2-3-7, Chl. Goverski 1-0-2, Cavotta 1-0-2, Higgins 1-0-2, Shakow 1-0-2. Totals 21-12-56,

Fonda-Fultonville

A. Lombardoni 4-5-14, Whitcavitch 3-3-9, Duval 1-0-2, Ky. Smith 2-0-5, Elson 1-0-3, Wilder 2-2-6, L. Lombardoni 2-0-4. Totals 15-10-43,

3-point goals: Mechanicville 2 (Cha. Goverski, Grayson); Fonda-Fultonville 3 (Elson, Ky. Smith, A. Lombardoni).

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