LOCAL ROUNDUP: NCCC women climb to No. 6

SARANAC LAKE — After winning seven of its first nine games, the North Country Community College women’s basketball team has been rewarded with the No. 6 ranking in this week’s National Junior College Athletic Association Division III poll.

The Saints only two losses this season have come at the hands of teams ranked in the top five nationally. North Country dropped a 61-54 decision against top-ranked Massasoit (Massachusetts) in the championship game of its season-opening tournament on Nov. 4, then lost 70-66 on the road against fifth-ranked Onondaga on Dec. 1.

North Country has a perfect 4-0 record on its home court in Saranac Lake, including wins over Fulton-Montgomery and Jefferson that closed out the first half of the season.

Head coach Jerrad Dumont, the reigning NJCAA Region III Coach of the Year, attributed his team’s strong start to a group of great leaders on and off the court.

“Ty Taylor, our sophomore captain, and the rest of our sophomores have really held everyone to a higher standard,” Dumont said. “I think that this has made everyone work harder in practice every day.”

Freshman Kayla Carder leads the team in scoring with 18.2 points per game. Taylor is scoring at a 15.4 points per game clip while sophomore Bailee Gauthier is averaging 11.3 per game. 

“I also think that our ability to defend and rebound has really been a reason for our success,” Dumont said. “As a team, the girls have really bought into what we as coaches are teaching in practice on a daily basis.”

Taylor is averaging 7.2 rebounds, 5.6 assists and three steals per game. Carder is pulling down 14.2 rebounds per game and sophomore Jasime Cruse has averaged 7.8 rebounds per contest.

After the holiday break, the Saints will resume play on the road with a Jan. 10 matchup at Bristol Community College. North Country returns home Jan. 23 for a league game against Herkimer College.

BOYS HOCKEY

Northeastern Clinton 3, Saranac Lake 3 (OT)

ROUSES POINT — Northeastern Clinton tied the game late in regulation to pull even with Saranac Lake on Wednesday in a game that ended in a 3-3 tie.

Northeastern Clinton’s Lucas Bedard scored his second goal of the game at 10:46 of the third period to send the game into overtime. Neither team was able to find the back of the net in the extra period.

Saranac Lake took a 2-1 lead early in the third period when Alex Dukette scored on an assist by Austen Reyell. NCCS answered two minutes later on a Blake Chevalier goal, but the Red Storm responded at 10:06 when Reyell scored with assists going to Dukette and Camden Reiley.

Saranac Lake freshman Hugo Hobson scored a goal in the first period on assists by Robert Stephenson and Jon Kratts.

Jaden Gladd manned the goal for the Red Storm, turning away 23 of the 26 shots he faced. NCCS goalie Ethan Garrand stopped 36 of the 39 shots by Saranac Lake.

Tuesday

Saranac Central 7, Lake Placid 4

PLATTSBURGH — The Lake Placid boys hockey team was unable to capitalize on a shots on goal advantage Tuesday night as Saranac Central skated to a 7-4 victory.

Tyler Hinckley scored two goals for the Blue Bombers, who outshot Saranac 44-26.

Austin Carpenter had three goals and an assist for the Chiefs.

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