Mallards Tame Ponies, 35-20

Mallards Tame Ponies, 35-20
sophie brennan

BERLIN- Worcester Prep’s girls’ varsity basketball team came back from winter break with a 35-20 win over visiting Chincoteague on Tuesday for their third straight win.

The Mallards spotted the Ponies a 6-0 lead early before going on a 20-point run that spanned much of the first quarter and last nearly two minutes into the third. Trailing 6-0 early, Worcester’s Sophie Brennan got the Mallards on the board with a jumper at the four-minute mark to cut the lead to 6-2. Worcester’s Frankie Willing then stole the ball and converted the layup to cut the lead to 6-4. Seconds later, Willing hit a long jumper to tie the game at 6-6 as the first quarter expired.

Shortly into the third quarter, Worcester’s Meredith Smith nailed a long jumper to give the Mallards their first lead of the game at 8-6. Smith scored again moments later on a rebound and a put-back to extend the lead to 10-6. After a technical foul on Chincoteague, Willing converted two free throws to extend the lead to 12-6 and Worcester had scored 12 straight points.

Willing then hit another long jumper to push the lead to 14-6 at the midway point in the second. On its next possession, the Mallards passed the ball around the perimeter before finding Smith, who got a good look inside and converted the basket to extend the lead to 16-6. Worcester’s Molly Soule hit a long jumper that banked off the glass just before the second quarter expired as Worcester took an 18-6 lead into halftime.

Early in the third quarter, Brennan launched a long shot from the top of the key to push the lead to 20-6. With 6:09 remaining in the third, the Ponies finally got back on the scoreboard to cut the lead to 20-8 with their first basket since the midway point in the first quarter. Worcester responded with a fast-break layup by Cecily Sass to push the lead to 22-8 and made it 23-8 seconds later on a free throw by Soule.

Worcester’s mini-run was punctuated by a long three-pointer by Willing to extend the lead to 26-8. Chincoteague responded with a jumper from the corner to cut the lead to 26-10 and then nailed a long three-pointer as time expired in the third to close the gap to 26-13 going into the final quarter.

Chincoteague scored just seconds into the fourth quarter to cut the lead to 28-15 and what was once looking like a blowout was suddenly a game again. Meanwhile, Worcester continued to crash the offensive boards but missed on several scoring opportunities. With 5:02 remaining in the game, Willing nailed a long jumper from just inside the three-point line to extend the lead to 30-15. However, Chincoteague came right back with a three-pointer to cut the lead to 30-18 with 4:26 remaining.

After a Soule free throw extended the lead to 31-18, Worcester’s Alison Greer hit a long jumper to push the lead to 33-18. Chincoteague scored with 1:45 remaining to cut the lead to 33-20, but Brennan hit a jumper from the top to round out the scoring and finish the game with a 35-20 win.

Willing led the Mallards with 13 points, while Brennan and Smith each scored six. The win was the third straight for Worcester, which improved to 5-9 after a 2-9 start to the season.