by Tom Utescher
The girls’ hoops teams from Germantown Academy and Penn Charter both suffered close losses in their first outings last week in the Gwynedd Mercy Academy summer league. In the last scheduled game of the week, the two traditional Inter-Ac League rivals faced one another, and the GA Patriots prevailed, 41-24, after leading 21-11 at the half.
Playing her first summer league games on Wednesday, Germantown junior Maddie Vizza hit a pair of three-pointers in each half against Penn Charter for a game-high 12 points. Sophomore Jessica Moore was close behind with 11, and juniors Sarah DiLello and Jaye Haynes had eight and seven points, respectively. In their first appearance at Gwynedd for Penn Charter, Carmen Williams scored nine points and fellow junior Kait Carter had six.
GA had played on Tuesday evening, bowing to Upper Perkiomen High School, 45-41, while in the first of Penn Charter’s two games on Wednesday, the Quakers fell to Haverford High School, 36-31.
With various absences and injuries shrinking the pool of available players, GA went into Tuesday’s game with only one of last season’s starters, and the bench was made up entirely of three incoming freshmen.
Perkiomen Valley didn’t have any superstars, but did have a large group of disciplined, determined players who finished shots.
A couple of three-pointers by junior Lindsay Putnam helped sustain the GA offense for the first quarter of the contest, but with eight minutes to go until halftime the Patriots trailed the Indians, 18-12.
GA’s Haynes scored most of her 11 first-half points after that, hooping a pair of three-point baskets and also penetrating on drives. At the end she earned an assist with a transition pass to sophomore post player Becca Booth, who scored to give the Pats a 26-24 edge at the intermission.
Perk Valley got the second half going with a trey and a breakaway basket, and the Indians also defended GA pretty well after the intermission, only giving up 15 points. From a 30-30 tie, the Indians went ahead with a 7-2 spurt and then remained in front. After that 30-30 score with almost a dozen minutes left to play, a “three” by Putnam and a driving lay-up by Moore were Germantown’s only field goals.
Haynes finished with 18 points, while Putnam and Booth added nine and eight, respectively.
On Wednesday, Penn Charter and Haverford High School were neck-and-neck throughout the first half. Drives by sophomores Kaitlyn Hnatkowsky and Laila Hamiter got the Quakers going, then Williams and Carter chimed in with three-point buckets.
With just over six minutes left in the first half, two made free throws by incoming Quakers freshman Amani Rivers extended a Penn Charter lead to 15-9, then the Fords scored six straight points to pull even. Getting into the one-and-one bonus near the end of the half, Charter had Hamiter go three-for-four at the line and led 18-15 at the break.
Early in the second half, the last of several ties came at 24-all, then an 8-0 run moved Haverford High ahead for good. PC’s offense revived in the final 90 seconds, but it wasn’t enough to prevent a 36-31 setback. Carter collected 12 points and Williams finished with eight for the Quakers, who received five points from Hamiter and two apiece from Hnatkowsky, Rivers and sophomore Kaitlynn Haughey.
In the next contest, two three’s by Vizza and a midrange jumper and two free throws by Moore got GA out to a 10-2 lead over Penn Charter, which got on the board with a jumper from near the foul line by Williams.
Carter netted one free throw and a transition lay-up to make it 10-5, then the Patriots pulled away again as Moore and Haynes combined for six straight points. With 22 seconds left PC sophomore Ava Coyle canned one of two free throws to make it a 10-point game at halftime, 21-11.
Scoring on a follow-up move, Hamiter got Charter on the board first in the second half, but in the remainder of the initial 10 minutes GA put together an 11-3 stretch to double up the Quakers at 32-16. PC was able to trim one point off of its deficit in the last 10 minutes.
The final field goal for Germantown Academy was a three-pointer by sophomore Charlotte DiLello (sister of Sarah), and one of the last buckets for Penn Charter was a 15-footer by sophomore Jamie Kubach.