WALES — After scoring just 24 points in a loss at Carrabec last month, the Oak Hill girls basketball team knew that defense would be the key to winning the rematch on Friday night.

For most of the game, the Raiders not only matched Carrabec’s defensive intensity, they were better, and that enabled Oak Hill to build a lead and hold on for a 38-33 Mountain Valley Conference win.

“They play excellent man-to-man defense and we knew we had to match that (intensity),” Oak Hill coach Charlie Castonguay said. “They held us to 24 points up at their place. We knew it was going to be a close battle.”

Oak Hill (7-6) led by 11 points early in the third quarter and took a 31-23 lead into the fourth before the Cobras (7-5) rallied. A Liberty Chestnut layup with 3:43 to play cut Oak Hill’s lead to 32-30. When Bailey Atwood made a free throw with 2:10 to play, the Raiders’ lead was a point, 34-33. That would be the last of Carrabec’s scoring as Oak Hill’s defense tightened up over the final two minutes. Jamie Prue sank a pair of free throws with five seconds left to seal the win for the Raiders.

Throughout the game, Carrabec had trouble solving Oak Hill’s zone defense. Unable to get the ball inside, the Cobras settled for long jump shots, and that help the Raiders take a 19-10 halftime lead. In the third quarter, however, those long shots started to fall for the Cobras. Katie Stevens (17 points) hit three of her four 3-pointers in the second half for Carrabec and Oak Hill had to extend its zone to prevent the Cobras from getting open looks.

Carrabec’s fullcourt pressure helped the Cobras force turnovers in the second half and cut into Oak Hill’s lead. Carrabec didn’t help itself at the line, going just 2-for-10 in the game.

“The kids just played really tough. A lot of good intensity of defense, and that was the difference,” Castonguay said.

Bri Mulherin scored a game-high 18 points to lead Oak Hill.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM

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