SARANAC LAKE - After having two games against Plattsburgh postponed due to the weather, the Saranac Lake girls basketball team finally got to host the Hornets in a Champlain Valley Athletic Conference matchup Monday night.
Playing Plattsburgh for the first time this season, the Red Storm found out just how good their opponent can be. Paced by hot shooting from 3-point range and a strong performance by Brin Keyser near the basket, the Hornets claimed a 53-34 victory to stay tied at the top of the CVAC standings with a 13-2 record.
Saranac Lake coach Dave Zerrahn said he knew the Hornets had a strong outside game led by senior Marle Curle. Keyser provided Plattsburgh with a strong presence inside, finishing with a game-high 15 points. The Red Storm did a decent job defending Curle, holding the league's second-leading scorer to a dozen points, but the Plattsburgh point guard had plenty of help on the perimeter as six players combined to drain nine 3-pointers in the victory.
Plattsburgh’s Marle Curle drives to the basket while drawing a host of Saranac Lake defenders including Nicole Viscardo, right, Megan Kilroy (4) during the second half of Monday’s game in Saranac Lake.
(Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)
Katy Buckley attempts a layup for Saranac Lake during Monday’s game against Plattsburgh. Buckley, a junior, led the Red Storm with 12 points in the game.
(Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)
"They had nine 3-pointers, who do you defend?" Zerrahn wondered after the game. "They shot lights out. That's 27 big points for them right there. We knew they were strong on the perimeter, and our focus was defending the perimeter, but tonight they had a nice inside-outside game."
The Red Storm, who fell to 10-6, stayed close for a very short time. After Keyser gave the Hornets a 2-0 edge, senior Nicole Viscardo knocked down a 3-pointer to put Saranac Lake on top. It turned out to be the only time the hosts led in the game.
Another Red Storm 3-pointer from Regan Kieffer tied the score at 7-7 midway through the first period, but Plattsburgh went on nine-point run to finish the stanza and never looked back. The Hornets pushed their lead to 29-16 at the half, and pulled away with a big third quarter that saw them outscore the Red Storm 20-4 to go up 49-20 with one period left to play.
Facing back-up players in the fourth quarter, Saranac Lake outscored Plattsburgh 14-4 the rest of the way to make the contest a little closer than it appeared.
Olivia Carlson led Plattsburgh with a trio of 3-pointers and finished with nine points. Curle netted two from long range, and Kaylia Carper, Kianna Dragoon, Kelly Cantwell and Cierra Duquette had a 3-pointer each in the win.
"Our girls played pretty well," said Plattsburgh co-head coach Joe Staves. "We defended well and we a nice night shooting, especially in the third quarter. Brin Keyser really opened things up for us. She did a nice job inside, and that allowed us to kick the ball to the outside."
Katy Buckley had a strong game inside for Saranac Lake, leading the team with 12 points. Kieffer was the Red Storm's next top scorer, finishing with nine points, including a pair of 3-pointers.
The game was the final contest at home for Red Storm seniors Viscardo, Kieffer, Megan Moody, Megan Kilroy, Marisa McDonough and Remy Orticelle.
Despite the loss, Zerrahn was happy with how his team played, adding that it was just one of those games where Plattsburgh got hot from the field. And after playing Plattsburgh in a make-up game at home, the Red Storm will face the Hornets again tonight on the road, which will be their next-to-last regular-season matchup on the schedule.
"We handled the ball well against their pressure defense," Zerrahn said. "We'll have to figure out a solution for Keyser. If we can keep pressure on her in the middle, and they don't shot as well, we'll have a better chance."
Plattsburgh 53, Saranac Lake 34
Carper 1-0-3, Dragoon 3-0-7, Cantwell 1-0-3, Carlson 3-0-9, Bedard 0-0-0, Duquette 1-0-3, Keyser 6-3-15, Curle 5-0-12, LaBarge 0-1-1, Marlow 0-0-0, Miller 0-0-0. Totals: 20-4-53.
Saranac Lake (34)
Ward 0-0-0, McDonough 0-0-0, Moody 0-0-0, Kilroy 1-2-4, Woodruff 1-0-2, Kieffer 3-1-9, Orticelle 1-0-2, Viscardo 2-0-5, Buckley 6-0-12. Totals: 14-3-34.
3-point goals: Plattsburgh (9), Carper, Cantwell, Dragoon, Carlson 3, Duquette, Curle 2. Saranac Lake (3), Kieffer 2, Viscardo.