YORK TWP. — A shorthanded Keystone girls basketball team did what it needed to do to give itself a chance, but Buckeye did enough to make sure it got the win.
In a Patriot Athletic Conference Stars Division game that had exactly as many turnovers as points, the Bucks prevailed 27-14 Wednesday night.
Buckeye (4-4, 4-1) had just six points on 3-for-17 shooting over the middle quarters, but never trailed because the Wildcats had three points in the first period, two in the second and none in the fourth.
“We didn’t play to the best of our ability,” said Bucks point guard Gabby Glancy, who had seven points. “We made a lot of mistakes. It was just rough.”
Without its three leading scorers — 5-foot-10 Taylor Stefan (8.3) was injured and guard Haley Sprouse (10.0) and 6-0 center Grace Baracskai (8.0) were out due to disciplinary reasons — Keystone helped make it that way.
Knowing his team was going to struggle to score, Wildcats coach Scott Terry spent all but the last 2ﾽ minutes in a 2-3 zone, with Peyton Halleen paying special attention to Buckeye center and leading scorer Grace Allen (9 points, 9 rebounds).
The plan was to slow and shorten the game and limit Allen’s touches, and it might have succeeded had Buckeye not won the first period 12-3, or had Keystone been able to make a few more shots.
The Wildcats were 1-for-7 from the field in each of the first two quarters, but only lost the second period 4-2 because the teams combined to go 3-for-18 from the floor.
“When you’ve got your three leading scorers out, it’s going to have an effect on your basketball team,” Terry said. “But like I told the girls in the locker room, we had a game plan coming in and we executed it. That’s all I could ask for. We wanted the tempo to be slow.”
There’s no disputing it was that.
After taking a 16-5 lead at halftime, Buckeye got outscored 9-2 in the third period and suddenly it was an 18-14 game.
Keystone point guard Valeri Broschk (6 points, 3 assists) had her only hoop of the game to start a 7-0 run to end the quarter, while freshman Madi Herrington came off the bench to score the last five.
“We got too ahead of ourselves,” Glancy said. “We had a little bit of, ‘We’re going to win this thing.’ We shouldn’t have thought like that.”
The first 6:14 of the fourth period featured 14 turnovers — seven by each team — and two points on a Glancy steal-and-score at the 5:18 mark.
His team up 20-14 and with possession with four minutes to go, Buckeye coach Ron Clady had Glancy hold the ball in the center of the floor, just inside midcourt, in an attempt to pull the Wildcats out of their packed-in 2-3.
With everyone in the sparse crowd watching her, Glancy dribbled in one spot for 90 seconds before Keystone finally came out and played man-to-man defense.
“I’m mostly focused on the game, so I didn’t really mind it,” the junior said. “It was awkward at first, but we had to do it so I tried to get over it.”
Terry felt he had to stay in the 2-3 as long as possible, so he did that. What he feared about playing man-to-man came true, as Buckeye scored seven unanswered points over the final 1:46, with the athletic Allen getting the last four.
“We wanted to shorten the game and we were only down by six, so we stayed in (zone) as long as possible,” Terry said. “What I thought would happen (when the Wildcats went man) happened. They’re a hard team to guard man-to-man, especially Allen.”
Buckeye, which played a 2-3 zone the entire game but mixed in full-court pressure on the rare occasions when it scored, finished 10-for-30 from the field and committed 20 turnovers, with 13 coming in the second half. Sydney Bell was solid for the Bucks, finishing with four points, five boards and two assists.
Keystone went 6-for-29 from the field (.207) and had 20 turnovers.
“We came out in the first quarter and did what we wanted to do,” Buckeye’s Clady said. “We shot well and played good defense, then we couldn’t find it the last three quarters.
“It was not something you write home about, but as a young team it’s a win we can build on.”
Buckeye 27, Keystone 14
KEYSTONE 3 2 9 0 — 14
BUCKEYE 12 4 2 9 — 27
Keystone — Ashley Buttolph 1-0-2, Ashley Elliott 2-0-4, Peyton Halleen 0-1-1, Autumn Acord 0-0-0, Valeri Broschk 1-0-2, Madi Herrington 2-0-5, Shelby Fortune 0-0-0. TOTALS: 6-1-14.
Buckeye — Sydney Bell 1-2-4, Madison Ross 1-0-2, Grace Allen 4-1-9, Tatum Widenmeyer 1-0-3, Gabby Glancy 2-2-7, Courtney Keeler 1-0-2. TOTALS: 10-5-27.
3-point goals — Herrington, Glancy, Widenmeyer. Rebounds — Keystone 18 (Broschk 6), Buckeye 20 (Allen 9). Assists — Keystone 4 (Broschk 3), Buckeye 7 (Bell, Ross 2). Records — Keystone (3-3, 3-1), Buckeye (4-4, 4-1). Junior varsity — Buckeye 26, Keystone 19.