To start the fourth quarter in the Clinton High School gym, visitor Holland Patent scored a basket in the first 30 seconds.
After trailing the Clinton girls varsity basketball team at the end of the first quarter, 11-8, HP had slowly pulled away. Their fourth-quarter score gave them their largest lead of the game at 20 points, 41-21.
But Clinton, whose 3-5 record hides how hard these Warriors work, then took over the fourth quarter. While they lost 42-30, from that point on Clinton was all over the ball, making steals, grabbing rebounds and outscoring the 4-3 Knights 9-1 to close out the game.
While Clinton was the smaller team on the court, they were the faster. That speed to the ball helped them jump to a 5-0 lead and end the first quarter up 11-8 after the Golden Knights finally got on the board almost five minutes into the league contest.
Katelynn Williams, playing her first season of basketball, hustled for rebounds and speedy Mariah Seward made steals and disrupted the HP offensive repeatedly.
Coach Elaine Hogan’s team has two reliable scorers in Hanna Morse and Gianna Trunfio and both players opened big on their way to double-digit scoring. Each had a 3-pointer and Trunfio followed hers with a layup as she was fouled for a four-point burst in less than a minute.
Holland Patent caught up and took the lead in the second quarter on an 11-point run despite some heads up play by Hannah Slawson. First she stood on her tiptoes for a nice save underneath the Knights basket and then hit a bank shot with 2:45 left in the half to end the Knights’ scoring run. That made it 17-13, but HP scored the next seven points to widen the gap.
Morse netted another 3-pointer before the half ended with the Knights…