Big third quarter leads Laker girls past Wells, 45-33

Kristen Huntress of Lake Region takes the ball the other way after coming up with a steal against Wells. (Rivet Photo) LAKERS 45 Sarah Hancock 2-2-7, Kristen Huntress 3-0-7, Lauren Jakobs 2-4-9, Melody Millett 2-0-4, Allison Morse 0-2-2, Chandler True 2-0-6, Spencer True 2-0-6, Meghan VanLoan 0-4-4, Molly Christensen, Devin Langadas, Alizah Thayer-Broussard. 3-Pointers: Hancock, Huntress, Jakobs, C. True 2, S. True 2. FT: 12-of-18 (67%) FG: 13-of-45 (29%) Turnovers: 11 Rebounds: (23), Jakobs 7, Millett 4, Hancock 4, C. True 3, VanLoan 3, S. True 1, Huntress 1. WELLS 33 Taryn Lambert 1-1-3, Alyssa Loukola 0-2-2, Hannah Moody 3-0-7, Allyson O’Brien 2-0-5, Halee Ramsdell 4-2-10, Kaitlyn Schott 1-0-2, Leah Tufts 2-0-4. 3-Pointers: Moody, O’Brien. FT: 5-of-9 (56%) FG: 13-of-44 (30%) Turnovers: 19 Rebounds: (26)

Kristen Huntress of Lake Region takes the ball the other way after coming up with a steal against Wells. (Rivet Photo)
LAKERS 45
Sarah Hancock 2-2-7, Kristen Huntress 3-0-7, Lauren Jakobs 2-4-9, Melody Millett 2-0-4, Allison Morse 0-2-2, Chandler True 2-0-6, Spencer True 2-0-6, Meghan VanLoan 0-4-4, Molly Christensen, Devin Langadas, Alizah Thayer-Broussard.
3-Pointers: Hancock, Huntress, Jakobs, C. True 2, S. True 2.
FT: 12-of-18 (67%)
FG: 13-of-45 (29%)
Turnovers: 11
Rebounds: (23), Jakobs 7, Millett 4, Hancock 4, C. True 3, VanLoan 3, S. True 1, Huntress 1.
WELLS 33
Taryn Lambert 1-1-3, Alyssa Loukola 0-2-2, Hannah Moody 3-0-7, Allyson O’Brien 2-0-5, Halee Ramsdell 4-2-10, Kaitlyn Schott 1-0-2, Leah Tufts 2-0-4.
3-Pointers: Moody, O’Brien.
FT: 5-of-9 (56%)
FG: 13-of-44 (30%)
Turnovers: 19
Rebounds: (26)

By Wayne E. Rivet
Staff Writer
With his team clinging to a 21-17 lead, Coach Paul True didn’t have to think hard about what his halftime speech would entail.
Two words.
Rebound.
Effort.
A young Wells squad — starting four sophomores and a junior — were a step quicker and more tenacious on the boards. The Warriors stayed close to the Lakers by dominating the glass 18-9.
“The emphasis at halftime was effort. I didn’t feel we were meeting their intensity level. When they are getting three attempts every time down the floor and we are one and done every time down the floor, to me it is a sign that obviously we are not playing as hard as they are,” Coach True said. “We also addressed that we needed to get physically tougher. We were not blocking out at all or sustaining any kind of contact. The girls obviously met the challenge in the third quarter. We did a great job on the backboards at both ends.”
The Lakers responded to their coach’s challenge by winning all phases of the game. Freshman Lauren Jakobs scored five of her team-high nine points and hauled down four rebounds during a 16-4 run as the Lakers dumped Wells 45-33 Tuesday night at the Theodore Nutting Gymnasium.
“We did a good job ratcheting up the intensity level and one of our focuses was trying to pick up the tempo, which we started to press more and varied our types of pressure,” Coach True said. “Again, I thought our kids did a nice job of responding.”
Wells had a good bounce to their step in the opening quarter, jumping out to a quick 4-0 lead as Allyson O’Brien knocked down a three-pointer.
Struggling with their shooting as Wells opened up with a zone defense, the Lakers went scoreless for nearly five minutes until Spencer True drilled a three-pointer and sister, Chandler, followed it up with her own trey from the right corner to give the Lakers a 6-5 lead. Although they made just 3-of-13 shots to start the game, the Lakers enjoyed a 9-8 lead after one when Kristen Huntress connected on another trey.
Wells had plenty of chances to take control of the contest in the second quarter by dominating the glass behind sophomore Halee Ramsdell, who hauled down five of her game-high 10 rebounds. But, the Warriors struggled putting the ball in the hoop, making just 4-of-15 shots.
Lake Region pushed their lead to seven by getting the job done at the foul line, converting 8-of-10 chances into points as senior center Meghan VanLoan gave LR an inside presence with several strong moves to the rim, resulting in sinking 5-of-6 foul shots.
Wells pulled to within 21-17 at the half by scoring off an offensive rebound and a drive to the hoop by Tayrn Lambert.
If Coach True didn’t like what he was seeing from his club over the first 16 minutes, he saw his Lakers redeem themselves in the third quarter.
Picking up their defensive intensity by pressuring full court, the Lakers forced seven Wells turnovers. The Warriors scored two early buckets in the quarter, but then went scoreless over the final five minutes.
Meanwhile, Lake Region hit its stride on the offensive end. With senior guard Sarah Hancock directing the show, the Lakers had good balance as four different players scored, led by Jakobs who netted five straight points.
Hancock topped off the game-changing run with a nifty pass to Melody Millett, who scored a layup to end the frame.
“Sarah is the calming influence on the floor. She makes great decisions. We want the ball in her hands as much as possible because we trust she is going to make the best decision and most of the time she does that,” Coach True said.
Wells forced a Laker timeout by running off seven straight points to start the fourth quarter. LR took the air out of the Warriors’ sail when the Trues — this time Chandler first, Spencer second — knocked down back-to-back three-pointers to push the LR lead to 43-28. Hannah Moody’s three-pointer cut the Wells deficit to 10, but Hancock iced the victory by sinking a pair of foul shots in the closing minute.
As he said from Day 1 this season, Coach True knows his club needs contributions from each player every night if the Lakers are to succeed this season. Tuesday, a pair of freshmen — Lauren Jakobs and Chandler True — made big shots at big moments.
“We went fairly deep into our bench tonight,” said Coach True, noting that junior guard CeCe Hancock was out due to injury. “All of the kids had their moments. Chandler and Lauren are freshmen, and play like freshmen at times, but they also at times showed the kind of ability that they have and made some great plays.”
Tuesday’s win was a nice bounce back after the Lakers suffered their first loss of the season last Friday night against York.
“We have a big-three game stretch before the break, and tonight was the first challenge. We took care of one and now we are preparing for Falmouth on Thursday,” Coach True said. “I was pleased with the way our players responded to our halftime chat, first and foremost. I was pleased in the third quarter that we were able to pick up and control the tempo, by making some great decisions — finding open players. Coming off the bench, some kids, like Melody Millett, did a great job.”
On a night Coach True issued a challenge to his players to step up their games in the second half against a scrappy Wells club, he tossed out another challenge after the game.
“Something else we talked about in the locker room is that you will get a chance, and what you do with the opportunity is totally up to you,” he said. “Some kids need to start working for their playing time. And just because you are on the court doesn’t mean you will stay there unless you work harder. I thought some kids did that tonight. Our philosophy is for our kids to get better every day, compete in practice, every day, showing up mentally and physically prepared, every day, and playing time issues work themselves out.”
Wildcats claw back for win
It’s rarely how you start that matters, but how you finish.
York fell behind Lake Region 12-0 to start last Friday’s game in Naples, but the Wildcats clawed their way back to record a 54-41 victory.
Lake Region’s downfall was the third quarter as York erased a 25-24 deficit with a 16-6 run. The Cats out scored the Lakers 30-16 in the second half as Shannon Todd led the way with a game-high 20 points.
Lake Region was led by Spencer True with nine points (three 3-pointers). Other scorers were: Sarah Hancock 7, Kristen Huntress 7, Lauren Jakobs 6, CeCe Hancock 3, Alizah Thayer-Broussard 3, Chandler True 3 and Meghan VanLoan 3.
Up next: The Lakers host Gray-New Gloucester (4-0) on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. The Patriots scored a big win Tuesday night, knocking York from the unbeaten ranks.

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