CHESHIRE, Mass. — Not that there was anything wrong with the 19-point win the Hoosac Valley girls basketball team recorded over Mount Greylock the first time the teams played, or even the 15-point win in the regular-season rematch.
But going into Thursday's Western Massachusetts Division 3 quarter-final game, the Hurricanes thought they could do a little bit better.
And boy did they ever.
Emily Rosse scored 22 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, and Fallon Field scored 15 to lead Hoosac (20-1) to a 71-39 victory and a sectional semi-final next Tuesday at 6 p.m. against third-seeded Granby.
Granby, who Hoosac beat, 74-48, back on Jan. 28, improved to 19-2 on Thursday night with a 45-39 win over Hampshire.
The Hurricanes, who had a bye through the first round of the sectional tournament, used the time to their advantage, putting
in a few wrinkles for the seventh-seeded Mounties (16-6) this time around.
"We actually changed up our press a little bit, so they didn't know what was coming after them," Rosse said. "Extra practice definitely helped us out."
Hoosac coach Ron Wojcik said the 'Canes were not taking Mount Greylock lightly after the Mounties hung tough against the defending Western Mass champions last time out.
"I thought Greylock handled our pressure well [last time], so we just some adjustments for that," Wojcik said. "And I thought the girls did a good job with adjustments.
"And [Greylock's] Lucy [Barrett] shot the ball so well the other night against Mahar, that we put a lot of focus on her with [Megan Rodowicz and McKenzie Robinson], and I thought they did a really good job trailing her tonight.
"We just wanted to make them work for everything and still stay within the framework of what we do, pressure-wise. And I think the kids did a good job of that."
Barrett had just three points at half-time and finished with a team-high 13 for Mount Greylock.
The Mounties stayed within arm's length of Hoosac for most of the first half. When McKenzie Flynn drove the left wing for two of her six points with about three minutes left in the second quarter, she cut the lead to seven, 27-20.
But Hoosac closed the first half on a 10-0 run to take control.
Rosse got it started with a bucket in the post, then Field and Robinson (12 points) hit back-to-back triples, and Field got a steal and a lay-in to make it 37-20 going into the locker room.
Hoosac stretched its lead to 23 after three quarters, and Rosse helped close it out with a nine-point fourth quarter.
For Mount Greylock, which not only made the tournament for the first time in years but won a game to reach the quarters, the future is bright with most of the roster returning for another go-around next winter, including Barrett, who will start the year building on a career scoring total already north of 1,100.
Starting forward McKenzie Flynn, on the other hand, will graduate having helped build the Mounties' program into a contender.
"Mac — who has been with us for six years — it's been quite a journey for her," Mount Greylock coach Paul Barrett said. "I think from my standpoint, it's been great for her, seeing her transformation as someone who has battled a lot of health issues and that kind of stuff. I'm happy for her to be able to walk away with something to remember.
"And Melina [Sfakianaki] just moved over from Greece last year, and I'm just so happy she's played. Both Melina and [senior] Julia [Vlahopoulos] are just so positive, so thoughtful in the way they approach the game. They're just great teammates.
"I hope the younger girls see what it takes to be a great teammate because all three of those girls are just that."