6th-graders finish undefeated; 5th not far behind
PUNXSUTAWNEY — The SS.C.D. elementary basketball program's sixth-grade team finished its season with an undefeated 26-0 record with three wins at the sixth-grade tournament at DuBois Central Catholic over the weekend in DuBois.
The final game "was a nail-biter," according to elementary basketball director Kurt Nestel. SS.C.D. held on for a 13-12 victory over Elk County Christian to clinch the undefeated season.
During the perfect season, SS.C.D. also earned the championship at the ECC Tourna-ment.
Last Wednesday, the sixth-graders concluded the team's regular season schedule with a 24-10 win over Marion Center in Punxsutawney.
SS.C.D. jumped out to a 10-2 halftime lead and never looked back, according to Nestel.
Kate Horner continued her all-around dominance across the columns of the stat sheet with 10 points, eight steals, five rebounds and four assists.
Kylee Lingenfelter had four points to complement a fine defensive performance with three steals, and Elyse White had five assists with her four steals.
Kally Graham added four steals in what Nestel called "another suffocating defensive effort" for the sixth-graders.
Mia Lingenfelter, Toya Jones, Alyse Whitman, Leah Miller and Kaitlyn Doverspike each recorded two points to wrap up the scoring for SS.C.D.
SS.C.D. also continued its dominance on the glass with Miller and Jordyn Powell snagging seven rebounds each and Jones and Doverspike both picking off five boards.
SS.C.D.'s fifth-graders also concluded a successful season this week with a win over Marion Center last Wednesday and a pair of wins in Johnsonburg Saturday.
Wednesday's victory was a close, defensive game, with SS.C.D. squeaking out the win, 11-9.
Kylee Shoemaker's multi-faceted performance included six points, seven boards, three steals and four blocks.
SS.C.D.'s defense was also assisted by five steals apiece by Bailey Jones and Emily Griebel, three by Cassidy Reed and a pair by Kyrie Nestel.
Reed and Kassidy Graham each had two points, and Griebel added a foul shot to round out the scoring.
Ally Whitman was strong on the boards for the fifth-graders, as well, with five rebounds.
Saturday, SS.C.D. traveled to Johnsonburg and earned a pair of victories, 16-8 and 20-17, in a doubleheader, avenging a pair of losses earlier this season. The two losses were the only ones for SS.C.D., which finished 19-2 on the year.
In the first game, defense dominated the first quarter, and SS.C.D. trailed 2-0. But SS.C.D. scored eight points in the second quarter to gain the lead and never relinquished it.
Shoemaker and Griebel led the scoring with four points each, and Megan Ray, Kyrie Nestel, Bailey Jones and Graham each had a pair.
Shoemaker, Jones and Graham owned the boards again, with 10, eight and six, respectively. Makena Nesbitt and Reed each added five, as well.
Graham and Griebel also swarmed the ball on every possession, with Graham (7), Griebel (6), Reed (5), Abby Gigliotti (5) and Ally Whitman (5) leading the way in steals in what director Nestel called "a smothering defensive effort."
In the second game, SS.C.D. ran out to a 20-8 lead, and despite a late push by Johnsonburg's offense, held on for a 20-17 win.
Reed scored six points to lead the offense, but "it was her many fine defensive plays and seven rebounds that stand out in this game," according to Nestel.
Graham had two points and 10 steals to complement five boards and three helpers in what Nestel called "another great all-around game."
Griebel had four points, seven steals and three assists, and was described by Nestel as "the spark plug of the team."
Shoemaker had a dozen rebounds and four steals to assist her two points, and Nestel had five steals, two points and two assists.
Jones had seven rebounds and five steals in an impressive defensive effort, and Ray had four rebounds and two points.
On the boards, Ally Whit- man (6), Allison Doverspike (4) and Ashley Whitman (4) each contributed to a full-team effort.
With the fall seasons coming to an end, the teams will take some time off before preparing for their winter season.