Lady Cougars pull away for 51-37 win
DIXFIELD -- When Dirigo stays together as a cohesive unit, good things happen and that was evident in a girls' basketball game Thursday.
Seniors Hannah Knight and Alyssa Wade combined for 33 points as the Lady Cougars pulled away down the stretch for a 51-37 win against Monmouth Academy at Defoe Gymnasium.
Each team had entered the game with momentum, after having won close contests the previous night. The score was tied or charged six times early in the first quarters. However, Dirigo (9-3), ranked No. 3 in Western Class C, eventually made its move. A couple runs midway through the second and third quarters produced a double-digit lead.
“We definitely kept our heads up,” said Knight, who scored a game-high 18 points. “We are playing hard and working well together. On defense, we were able to get back and make some steals and that opened up our transition game.”
In the third quarter, Paige Murphy (five steals) started things with a driving basket and Wade (15 points six rebounds, five assists, five steals) scored three baskets, including a three pointer. The Cougars led 34-19, as Monmouth was held scoreless until Sierra Spencer scored with 5:20 left in the third frame.
Monmouth (4-8) was led by Kristine Kahl and Kylie Kemp with eight points each. The Mustangs hurt themselves with 20 percent shooting on 33 shots in the first half.
“In the second half we tried getting the ball inside,” said Monmouth coach Scott Wing.
Monmouth trailed by ten following two baskets by Kemp early in the fourth quarter. But Dirigo scored eight unanswered points to lead 46-28. Ambyr Wilson and Knight made free throws and Wade stole the ball and dribbled in for a layup and completed a traditional three-point play.
“We've been playing well out on top,” said Dirigo coach Reggie Weston. “But this is a young team and can get helter skelter at times and that did happen. Other teams have been trying to pressure us and I thought we handled it well tonight.”
Dirigo made seven of 13 free throws in the fourth quarter, 10 for 25 in the game. Freshman Kayla Gaudin had nine rebounds. Junior Miranda Shurtleff is missing following a season-ending thumb injury. The Cougars won the JV game by 39-34 in overtime. Gretchen Bradbury (10 points) collided with a Monmouth player and was transported by ambulance to the hospital. She suffered a whiplash.
Lindsy Crutchfield added nine points.