Stags finally down Deering
PORTLAND — In the first half, Cheverus weathered a storm. In the second, a fog rolled in on Deering. And in the end, the Stags walked off with a memorable moment for their girls´ basketball program.
Georgia Ford scored four 3-pointers among her 19 points and Kylie Libby was dominant on the boards as Cheverus defeated Deering 48-38 in an SMAA game Wednesday night at Deering High.
It was the Stags´ first win over the Rams in the 11 years Cheverus has fielded a girls´ team.
Deering (16-2) entered its regular-season finale ranked No. 2 in the Western Class A Heal points.
Cheverus (15-2) is ranked third and the outcome wasn´t expected to change the final rankings.
The Stags will close out their schedule Thursday night at home against Portland.
"I´m happy for the girls, they played tough against an excellent team," Cheverus Coach Richie Ashley said. "We weathered a storm in the first half. This gives the girls the confidence that if they play our style well, they´ll be able to play with these great teams."
Two prime examples of Cheverus´ style were on display: scoring depth, in the form of Ford, and grit, in the form of Libby. With 3-point specialist Victoria Nappi (six points) having an off night, Ford stepped up to score eight of the Stags´ 12 second-quarter points, including two 3-pointers 30 seconds apart to cut Deering´s lead to 25-23 at halftime.
"This is the first or second game all year that I felt I was on," Ford said. "This win means a lot to every single one of us. It was the most fun game all year."
Deering had enjoyed a strong start, pushing out to a 10-4 lead with a balanced offense. Chelsea Saucier and Alexis Stephenson each scored nine points to lead Deering.
"We had a nice start and could have jumped out a lot more, but we got careless with the ball and then we got plagued with that foggy look," Deering Coach Mike Murphy said.
"We can´t have these moments of drifting off and not being in the game."
The 6-foot Libby pulled down 12 rebounds while grappling with Deering´s 6-4 center Marissa MacMillan (eight points, six rebounds).
Libby had just three points but they were big ones.
In the third quarter she banked a jumper off the glass to get the Stags within 29-25, then hit 1 of 2 free throws to make the score 29-26.
That set up Ford´s dramatic third 3-pointer that tied the game at 30 with 2:40 left in the third.
Brooke Flaherty hit a free throw with 4.1 seconds left to give Cheverus its first lead of the game, 30-29.
Cheverus slowly pulled away in the fourth period, led by Ford, who hit another 3-pointer and also went 5 of 6 from the foul line.