GARDINER — On a night when little went right for Gardiner girls basketball team, the Tigers still won handily against Lincoln Academy.
Plagued by foul trouble and poor shooting, the Tigers got a nice lift from their bench en route to a 53-34 win against the Eagles in a Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B game.
Gardiner (2-0) came close to running the Eagles (0-2) out of the gym in the first quarter as it ran and pressed its way to a 20-5 lead. The second quarter was nearly a reversal of the first after three Tiger starters got into foul trouble and went to the bench.
“We started fouling a lot and it let us get off our game offensively,” Gardiner point guard Kylee Granholm said. “Our outside shooting wasn’t on today and we had a hard time getting it into the post because Kelly (Macomber) was out.”
Macomber, a 6-foot senior, scored all eight of her points in the first quarter but sat much of the second period after picking up her second foul. The same went for Ally Day while Kelsey Moody picked up her third for the Tigers in the first half.
“We got totally out of our rhythm in the first half with those fouls,” Gardiner coach Mike Gray said. “We got four or five fouls 80 feet from the basket and it caught up with us in the second quarter.”
So did the Eagles, who outscored the Tigers 15-4 in the second period to trail 24-20 at the half. They also went from a man-to-man defense to a 1-3-1 zone and the Tigers struggled.
“We made a real nice run in the second quarter and things went well,” Lincoln coach Kevin Feltis said. “But Gardiner made some nice adjustments at halftime.”
The Tigers resumed their press in the third quarter but avoided fouling for the most part. They got a nice lift from several reserves, led by junior Camden Cone who came in for Macomber, scored six points and grabbed 12 rebounds. Liz Kelley, Rachel Quirion and Nicole Chadwick all scored and contributed off the bench.
The Tigers led 39-26 at the end of the third quarter as seven different players scored. And they put the game away in the fourth by hitting 10 of 12 free throws, Granholm and Day each scored 10 points with Granholm adding five assists and six steals. Junior center Jen Genthner led the Eagles with 10 points.
“I thought we played three really good quarters,” Gray said. “We weren’t shooting the ball well form the outside . . . but I thought we played great D in the second half without fouling.”
Gary Hawkins — 621-5638