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Tribe Girls Basketball Opens PAC-10 Season with Win over Pottstown
Written by Bradley Schlegel Correspondent
2014-12-17

Upper Perk's Jess Spano puts a shot up at the side of the basket as a Pottstown player tries to block the attempt in Friday night's PAC-10 opener at Upper Perk.

                With her team's point guard limited by foul trouble, Holly Graber did her best to make sure the Upper Perkiomen girls basketball team won its home opener Friday night.

                Graber, a senior, scored eight of her team-high 11 points during the second half to help lead the Indians to a 44-39 victory over Pottstown in the Pioneer Athletic Conference.

                "Holly just took over the game in the third quarter," said Pete Sovia, Upper Perkiomen's head coach. "She worked very hard on her game over the summer, and it showed."

                Alexis Moyer delivered nine points off the bench for the Indians (1-0 Pioneer Athletic Conference, 1-2 overall), who had seven players score. Jessica Spano contributed eight points.

                Regina Moyer chipped in with seven points for Upper Perkiomen, which withstood a late rally by the Trojans.

                "It feels good to get a win," senior point guard Aubrey Gibbs said. "Hopefully we can carry this into the rest of the season. We need to keep winning."

                With Graber on the bench for most of the game's final 10 minutes after being whistled for her fourth foul late in the third quarter, Moyer and freshman Bridget Mayza handled the ball down the stretch for the Indians.  Sovia called their performance a key to the victory.  "We got some real steady play from the freshman," the coach said.

                Gibbs said Moyer and Mayza were capable of performing in the clutch.  "I knew they could handle the ball well," said Gibbs, who fouled out with 3:01 remaining in the fourth quarter.

                "They were both a big key to the game," Sovia said.

                A six-day layoff did not affect the Indians, who utilized an 8-2 run in the second half to extend a 29-26 lead.  "At the beginning of the season, I figured it wouldn't be a big deal," Sovia said. "Had this been in the middle of the season, it could have created some problems."

                Gibbs said she didn't mind the long stretch between games.  "Our practices were pretty intense," she said.

                Graber converted three foul shots with 2:46 left in the third quarter to stake them to a 33-26 advantage. Her two free throws less than two minutes into the fourth quarter made it 37-28.

                Shemeka Gentles sparked a comeback effort for Pottstown. She scored seven of her game-high 18 points in the quarter to get the team within 40-38 with 1:21 remaining.

                Moyer delivered two free throws within the ensuing eight seconds to preserve the victory for Upper Perkiomen.

                Gibbs described Gentles as a post player whose skills compare with the best in the PAC-10.  "She's got the height and is very aggressive," Gibbs said of the Trojan senior.

                Both teams struggled at the foul line. Upper Perkiomen converted 15-of-27 shots, while the Trojans made only 10-of-30.

                The Indians also committed 28 turnovers. Gibbs said the nerves of debuting at home played a major role in their sloppy ball handling.  "We've got to do a better job taking care of the ball," she said. "I made way too many of those mistakes. I'm going to dwell on them all night (Friday). But I will work hard to eliminate them in the future."


 

 

 

 

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