WESTOVER — The Curwensville Area High School girls basketball team remained undefeated in the Moshannon Valley League by squeezing past homestanding Harmony 39-38 Monday night for its sixth victory in a row.
Lady Owls coach Chris Priester employed a triangle-and-two defense against Lady Tide top scorers Dani Struble and Jackie White, who were held to 13 points, but senior Ronna Knepp and junior Holly Fink stepped up with 12 and eight points, respectively, to bail out coach Vic Gearhart team.
\”We were expecting that junk defense on Dani and Jackie, but Ronna and Holly picked up the slack,\” Gearhart said. \”They were effective in taking Dani out, so I let Dani and Jackie bring the ball up and try to get good looks for the other girls.
\”I had a sick feeling going up there. Dani was sick, and we\’ve got midterms this week. And when you go to that place, they always give you a battle. I\’m just happy to get a win. We\’ve been fortunate to be able to pull out close games.\”
When the teams met on Dec. 12, Curwensville came from behind in the fourth quarter to nip Harmony 41-39. The rematch was just the opposite.
The Lady Tide, 5-0 in the MVL and 10-3 overall, led 15-14 at the half and increased the spread to seven with 18 points in the third quarter, when Knepp had four field goals and Fink had three.
\”We couldn\’t buy a bucket in the first half,\” Gearhart said. \”We had good looks but we didn\’t convert. We should have been up by double figures with the shot selection we had.
\”Then we got up a dozen or so, and they hit a couple threes and kept creeping back in. We didn\’t recognize the shooters in the fourth quarter and they drained some shots. We needed to get in their faces and make them drive. We just didn\’t cover out. But we hung on.\”
Alyson Leyo starred for the Lady Owls with 17 points and 20 rebounds, while Megan Brink added 12 points for the Lady Owls, 5-9 after their fourth MVL loss. Foul shooting was costly for the Lady Owls as they made only four of 15 free throws.
White just missed a double-double for the Lady Tide, netting nine points and grabbing 10 rebounds. Struble\’s four points were 16 under her average.
Curwensville travels to Brockway Thursday for an Allegheny Mountain League South Division game.
Alesia Bressler scored 15 points to lead the Lady Tide junior varsity to a 31-14 win.
CURWENSVILLE — 39
Dani Struble 1 2-4 4, Hannah Walls 0 0-0 0, Ronna Knepp 6 0-0 12, Holly Fink 4 0-0 8, Jackie White 4 1-3 9, Mindy Desmett 2 0-0 4, Holly Lansberry 1 0-0 2. Totals: 18 3-7 39.
HARMONY — 38
Megan Brink 5 1-4 12, Alyson Leyo 7 2-4 17, Kierstyn Kruise 2 0-3 4, Emily Leyo 1 1-2 3, Sam Gallaher 1 0-2, Christine Harkleroad 0 0-0 0. Totals: 16 4-15 38.
Three-Point Field Goals: Harmony 2 (Brink 1, A. Leyo 1).
Score by Quarters:
Curwensville 7 8 18 6 — 39
Harmony 4 10 10 14 — 38
Moshannon Valley League Standings:
Curwensville 5 0
West Branch 3 1
Moshannon Valley 2 2
Glendale 0 3
Harmony 0 4