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DeCriscio's 22 off bench helps Altoona blow by Lady Chucks

December 14, 2010

Punxsy's Parris Kernich (22) and Justine Kaza (24) defend Altoona's Courtney Becker during the first quarter Monday night. (Photo by Dan Walk/The Punxsutawney Spirit)

PUNXSUTAWNEY — Whether it was shooting beyond the arc, rebounding the ball offensively or defending the Punxsy girls' basketball team, Altoona had the Lady Chucks' number Monday night in Punxsutawney.

Kayla DeCriscio nailed five three-pointers and led all scorers with 19 points during the Lady Lions' 73-31 victory.

Punxsy, which trailed 40-13 at halftime, slumped to 0-3 on the season.

The Lady Chucks were held to single digits during every quarter, including five in the first frame. Altoona was ahead 22-5 entering the second quarter.

Altoona nailed eight three-pointers as a team, and when it wasn't scoring beyond the arc, the team was bullying Punxsy inside the paint.

Offensively, Punxsy couldn't find many opportunities inside the paint, as 15 of its 31 points came from three-point land.

"They're very athletic, a smart ball team, fundamentally-sound, and they get the ball up and down the floor," Punxsy head coach Randy Reitz said about Altoona. "They're quick, and they fill the gaps so fast. You have to be ready to catch and shoot. Their pressure bothered us."

Both teams received plentiful scoring off the bench, as 18 of Punxsy's 31 points came from non-starters. That includes a team-best 13 from junior Alex Magill, who registered three three-pointers.

Magill has led Punxsy in scoring each game this season, totaling 10 in the opener and eight Saturday.

"She's come off the bench and been our best shooter," Reitz said. "Hopefully, we get a few more people knocking down some jump shots. It'll help open up the inside game."

Starter Courtney Becker had 12 points in the paint for Altoona, Lauren Hippo scored 10 points, and Alexia Servello scored eight points. Altoona's bench outscored the Lady Chucks' whole team, 38-31.

Parris Kernich was Punxsy's No. 1 scorer from the starting five, managing seven points. Her three-pointer at the buzzer made it a 40-13 game at halftime.

Shawnna Crago added six points and six rebounds, finishing 2-for-4 from the free-throw line. Taylor Newcome nailed a trey and made two foul shots for five points. Punxsy shot six free throws to Altoona's zero, making for a very quick game.

Punxsy was behind 11-0 before Crago put in the team's first basket. It was 17-2 before Magill nailed a three with 1:19 left in the first quarter.

DeCriscio scored 13-straight points for Altoona, including a three-pointer late in the first quarter and 10 points to start the second quarter. After her 10 second-quarter points, Altoona was ahead 32-8.

Altoona outscored Punxsy 33-18 in the second half, constantly putting in second-chance points.

"I think we were tired and quit moving our feet," Reitz said. "When you're down that big, that happens."

Punxsy will play its only District IX League game of the month Thursday at home against Brookville, which will play Karns City tonight. The Lady Raiders are 2-1 and are coming off a 57-55 victory Monday night in Union.

"We have to get ready for a big game Thursday night," Reitz said. "They're going to be a tough opponent. They get after you, they pressure full court, and they play solid defense. We have to be able to handle their pressure."

Central-Martinsburg 42, Lady Chucks 27

MARION CENTER — The Lady Chucks fell to 0-2 with a 42-27 loss to Central-Martinsburg last Saturday in the Marion Center Tip-off Tournament's consolation game.

Punxsy trailed 20-15 at halftime, only to score five points in the third quarter and 12 in the second half.

Central-Martinsburg used a 14-point third quarter to pull away.

Shawnna Crago and Alex Magill led Punxsy with eight points apiece.

Jenna Reitz added five points, and Justine Kaza, Parris Kernich and Lindsey Paulina tallied two points apiece.

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