Perdew’s 36 points leads Frankfort over Martinsburg 62-58
By Chapin Jewell
SHORT GAP - Frankfort dug themselves a hole early in Monday night’s contest against AAAA Martinsburg, allowing the Lady Bulldogs to jump out to a 16-3 advantage.
The Lady Falcons would eventually claw their way back into contention, later going on a 10-0 run to tie the game 27-27 at intermission.
Frankfort had a very productive third period, outpacing Martinsburg 23-15 in the third stanza to open up an eight-point, 50-42 lead heading into the fourth period. It would be a dogfight down the stretch, with Frankfort doing the bulk of their damage at the foul line. That, along with key defensive stops when they needed it most, allowed Frankfort to secure the 62-58 victory.
It’s Frankfort’s second victory over a AAAA team from Berkeley County in as many tries, with a tight, 50-48 loss to AAA Hampshire sandwiched in between. Both of those AAAA opponents, Spring Mills and Martinsburg, advanced to the AAA state tournament in Charleston a season ago.
“It took us a little while to match up with their speed and quickness, but we found a way to get it done. Our man defense turned things around for us,” Frankfort coach Mike Miller stated. “We have to start faster, no doubt about it. We have had double digit deficits in all three games in the first quarter and that is a trend that we have to get corrected, and fast.
“We battled and scraped and clawed our way back. We attacked them by driving to the basket and drawing fouls. I believe we shot 27/40 from the line, so we are definitely successful doing that,” Miller explained.
In the victory, Marié Perdew led the way with a 36-point, 11 rebounds performance. Halley Smith was next with 10 points, four rebounds and three steals. Izzy Layton contributed seven points and five rebounds, Larae Grove tallied six points, four rebounds and two assists, and Michelle Phillips three points and eight rebounds.
In the loss, Martinsburg was led by McKenzie Jolliffe’s 30-point performance, followed by Ella Joseph’s eight points, Olivia Moyer’s five points, Leanna Holmes’ four points, and Skyler Dolig’s three points. Prosperity Stitt, Tayaria Rosario and Kaydance Bradley’s had two points apiece.
“Marié is carrying the load right now and we need her to. We are struggling to find points consistently outside of her,” Miller stated. “Her overall play has been phenomenal thus far and she is definitely leading our team and carrying them. We have to find some offense outside of her.
“Halley Smith, Izzy Layton and Michelle Phillips have given us a glimmer but we need production from everyone collectively,” Miller explained.
Martinsburg won the junior varsity contest 49-41. The junior Bulldogs were led by Brooklynn Medina’s 18 points. The junior Falcons were led by Grace Scott’s 12 points, followed by Lilyan Mills’ eight points, Veronica VanMeter’s six points, and Chloe Kauffman’s four points. Madie Ruble rounded out the scoring by one point.
“We have a schedule predicated to prepare us for later down the road. Being down double digits in three games and coming back takes guts and heart. Our kids have that and I love that about them. They will not give up,” Miller stated.
According to Miller, “We have built a program that doesn’t accept losing and these girls understand what Lady Falcon basketball means. We will continue to build our chemistry and write our story. Lord willing, we will write that story in Charleston.”
Frankfort (2-1), hosts AAAA Hedgesville on Wednesday, then makes a trip to Keyser on Friday. The Hedgesville game is varsity only starting at 6:30 p.m. At Keyser, junior varsity action tips off at 6 p.m., with varsity to follow at 7:30 p.m.