Cooperstown’s girls are going to the state basketball tournament.
The Redskins led throughout the Section Three Class C finals, winning their first overall sectional crown since 2008 with a 59-44 win over C-2 champ Weedsport on Feb. 28 at the Carrier Dome.
Weedsport made a second-half run, but Cooperstown played well under pressure.
“When we get tight, positive things happen,” said Sumer Murdock, who sank five three-point field goals including two to start the second half. “Our teamwork comes out and we play well when we’re under pressure.”
Murdock scored a game-high 21 points and Alannah Haggerty contributed 17 for Cooperstown, which had big runs to start and finish the game.
“I think we got gassed at the end of the third quarter,” said Cooperstown coach Mike Niles, whose team took a 29-18 lead into halftime before getting outscored, 13-9, in the third period. “We got a little rest and we started helping out Liz (Millea) against their press. We started breaking their press and we ended up getting easy layups out of it.”
Abby Marsden’s putback 10 seconds into the final quarter pulled Weedsport (18-4) to 38-33, but that was as close as it got. The Redskins followed with a 19-3 spurt that included a string of 11 straight points and ended when Nicole Cring made a putback with 1:14 left.
Cooperstown (20-2) started the game on a 12-1 run, which included six points from Haggerty, and led 15-6 after one quarter.
Murdock had a big second quarter, scoring eight points in a 14-12 second period that kept the Redskins on top at the break.
“Shooting is a process,” said Murdock, who scored six points in the third quarter and five more in the fourth. “Once I get the rhythm down, they seem to go in. I practice my shooting every morning with my dad and I’m always ready to shoot when I get the ball.”