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Strong Bishop McCort team takes down Lady Chucks

December 19, 2011

Punxsy sophomore Ashley Reitz retrieves a pass during Thursday's game against Brookville. Saturday, Reitz and the Lady Chucks traveled to Johnstown to take on Bishop McCort, but they were thwarted 56-37. (Photo by Lizi Arbogast/The Punxsutawney Spirit)

JOHNSTOWN — Although the Lady Chucks were down by just five points at halftime Saturday against Bishop McCort, they were outscored 14-6 in the third and eventually fell 56-37.

"We have to eliminate the mental mistakes at crucial times," Punxsy head coach Randy Reitz said. "At the end of the third quarter, we had a couple of turnovers, and they got the lead up to 12 points, and that's pretty much where it stayed until the end of the ball game."

The game was close through the first two halves, with Bishop McCort leading only 11-10 at the end of the first quarter.

Reitz said the game was also within a point nearing the end of the second quarter, but the Lady Chucks turned the ball over twice, allowing Bishop McCort to score twice and go up by five.

The third quarter is where the game really was out of hand for the Lady Chucks. Bishop McCort was strong both offensively and defensively and took a 13-point lead before the final stanza.

During the final quarter, Reitz said his team was strong and attempted to press more. But with strong foul shooting abilities, Bishop McCort was able to hold onto its lead and the eventual 19-point victory.

"Bishop McCort is a very good basketball team," Reitz said. "They press you at full court for 32 minutes, and for the most part, we handled their pressure throughout the game."

Taylor Newcome was the Punxsy's leading scorer Saturday, putting up five three-pointers and totaling 22 points.

Reitz is dealing with a young, somewhat experienced team. The Lady Chucks' roster has just two seniors and no juniors, which has made for a rough start to the season. But Reitz said the season is long, and there is still is a lot of work to be done, and Saturday, he saw how much the girls were willing to work.

"We'll eliminate the mistakes the more we play," he said. "Overall, with that type of pressure, I thought our kids handled it well."

Reitz said that despite losing, it is not difficult to keep the team motivated, and he has seen just how much they want to learn and improve.

"These kids play hard for 32 minutes," he said. "They want to compete, and they've competed in their young careers at the junior high levels, and they don't like to lose. We'll just stay positive, and things will come together with hard work."

The junior varsity squad also suffered a loss, 38-19, to Bishop McCort, but Shaina Painter had a strong showing with 11 points for the Lady Chucks.

Punxsy will travel to play the Lady Bison of Clearfield today, and Reitz said he thinks Clearfield will attempt to dominate inside because of its size advantage over the Lady Chucks.

"We're going to have to do a better job shooting the ball, and hopefully, we can knock down some shots, get something going and gain some confidence," Reitz said.

The JV game will begin at 6 p.m. with the varsity game following.

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