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IV Falls at Lewistown

Jan. 5, 2011

Open scoring lane

Lewistown opens with 30 in paint

January 5, 2011 - By Drew Pellman, Sentinel sports reporter
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LEWISTOWN - Through the years, not many teams have relied on their guards like the Lewistown girls basketball team has. Nearly year in and year out, the Panthers have dominated the backcourt with speed, athleticism and the ability to score from the outside.

So on Tuesday night against cross-county rival Indian Valley, it was odd - and perhaps a bit stunning - to see the first 30 Lewistown points come from in the paint. The Panthers used the quick start to take control early en route to a 68-45 Mountain League victory over the Warriors.

Veteran coach Kevin Kodish said that he couldn't remember a game that started like this one during his coaching reign.

"I'm confident in saying that it's probably the first time ever in 27 years because we have been guard-oriented over the years," Kodish said with a smile. "But these (post players) have that capability and the (guards) found them. We weren't hitting the outside shot early."

Starting forward Cheyenne Stonerook and first substitution Chelsea Siddons were the beneficiaries of that early on as each tallied six points in the opening quarter.

"We took what was available to us and they finished the shots to give us the big lead and that loosened up their defense a little bit more," Kodish said.

Indian Valley coach Roger Herto was making his return to the rivalry after not being involved for the last two seasons. And it was pretty apparent to him as to where his team was beaten on this night.

"I told them before the game that the key to this game was not going to be the first shot at each end, but the second or the third," Herto said. "And in some cases tonight, it was the fourth or the fifth. In a nutshell, No. 20 killed us. Cheyenne just absolutely dominated the glass on both ends - she was the difference in that game."

Herto went to say how impressed he was with Stonerook's game following her setback last season.

"I had the pleasure of coaching her in softball when she was a kid - what a great kid, what a great family, and for her to come back from that ACL injury and do what she's done, that's a real credit to her," he said. "She just killed us - I joked with her after the game that you're not supposed to do that to friends, but she deserved everything she got and more."

Count Kodish among those who are glad to see Herto back on the bench.

"We were coaching against each other for so many years - it was weird the last two years not having him over there opposite of me on the sidelines," he said. "It felt like Lewistown and Indian Valley again having Roger over there. It's a great rivalry between the schools and it was a nice occasion to have him back there."

Aside from Lewistown's duo inside, a layup from Logan Snyder was the only other field goal of the first quarter for the Panthers while Indian Valley managed a bucket apiece from Dani Treaster and Whitney Corbin to make it 14-4 at the end of one.

It was more of the same in the second, as Stonerook and Siddons combined for 12 more, Snyder added six and Olivia Halfpenny got in the mix with five. Corbin and Treaster hit triples for the Warriors and Breanna Cline added a deuce, but the visitors were unable to keep up as Lewistown increased its lead to 22 at 37-15 by the half.

Indian Valley showed that it had no plans to quit when the teams returned from the break, as Corbin struck for 12 points from beyond the arc in the third quarter alone. Couple that with three points from Priscilla Weaver and three more from Sammie Chesnut and the Warriors won their only stanza of the night (18-13) to cut the Panthers' lead to 50-33 with one more period remaining.

But Lewistown freshman Ashleigh Williams, who was held to just two points through three quarters, found her touch in the fourth with seven quick points to put the hammer down on any comeback thoughts that Indian Valley may have had.

Corbin added seven more points in the final frame for a game-high 24 points, but Lewistown's balanced attack featured four players that reached double digits in scoring. Stonerook's 20 led the way and was followed by Snyder (12), Siddons (12) and Williams (10). Just missing out of that group was Halfpenny, who finished with nine.

"It's nice to see that many players in double figures," Kodish said. "You obviously want to see a good rounded team effort."

Herto said that Corbin, as well as her teammates, did a solid job of stepping up in the second half after a slow start.

"We realize that offense is not one of our strengths and everybody knows that she is the player that we have to get the ball to sometimes," he said. "That's a credit to her and her teammates that it's happening. We still need other people to step up to give us that one-two punch, but I thought after what was a very timid first half, we had a pretty good second half."

Lewistown (7-1, 3-1) hosts Juniata on Thursday night before stepping out of the league for an anticipated battle at Greenwood on Saturday. The Warriors (4-4) also return to action Thursday when they will welcome in Bellefonte.

 

 

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