NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The McCann Tech girls basketball team Wednesday came from behind to beat Lee, 38-26.
This was the second meeting between these two teams and the first game went all the Lee Wildcats’ (3-3) way. A commanding 24-point win left an impression with McCann coach Kathy Budaj and the McCann Hornets (6-1) and motivated them to get back to the drawing board for this game.
“We were not prepared for their type of game” Budaj said when talking about the first matchup with Lee. "We knew they were quick so we decided to not play man and press and to just sit back in our zone and force them to shoot.
“We knew them being on the road could be an issue shooting so we just kept with it and let our defense make our offense.”
It was a much different beginning for both teams as the game was dictated by lots of fouls by Lee and a very low scoring first quarter. McCann had the early advantage as they led, 8-7, going into the second quarter. The game didn’t see its first field goal till 5 minutes into the game. The second quarter saw Lee start to settle into the game going on a 7-0 run to take the lead. McCann didn’t manage to score a single field goal in the quarter and only converted two free throws. Fortunately for the Hornets, Lee couldn’t take advantage of this offensive lull and only managed a 14-10 lead at the half.
In the second half, Lee looked like it was en route to repeat their first meeting with McCann, going on a 6-0 run, including four from Emma Puleri (team-high eight points). Second chances were key for Lee as it dominated the glass early in the quarter. McCann struggled to score as they settled for 3s early and often. It wasn’t until Grace Towler knocked down a triple and lifted that imaginary cap on the hoop that McCann went on a 5-0 run to get back to within five points.
Towler and Izzy Lacasse each had 10 points. Kaylee Tatro added seven points for the Hornets.
McCann continued to put the pressure on Lee and finally got its first lead of the game off an offensive rebound from Towler that sparked McCann into a 13-0 run to finish off the game,
“Grace had a huge rebound for us,” Budaj said. “She is one of those that everyone thinks of her for the 3, so when she drives she adds another part to her game.
“We rebounded well early but slowed down in the third and picked it back up in the fourth and I thought that was the difference in the game.”
McCann continued its impressive run, grabbing its fifth win in a row dating back to their first and only loss to Lee. The Hornets will look to improve next Tuesday on the road at Mohawk.
As for the up and down season for Lee, the Wildcats will head to Hoosac Valley Friday night for a matchup with the Hurricanes.