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Generals outplay Raiders again, win 51-46 » Herkimer Generals

Generals outplay Raiders again, win 51-46

Herkimer, NY – The Generals earned a team-defining and season-defining 51-46 win over the Fulton-Montgomery ("FM") Raiders on Thursday evening. It was Head Coach BJ Gouger's team's second win over higher-ranked FM this season.

wbball 02 08 2013 SeabrooksThe two teams met just over two weeks ago on the Johnstown campus. The Raiders were ranked #3 in the regional coaches' poll prior to that game, and they are still sitting third in the current poll. The Generals were ranked fourth both then and in the current poll. Herkimer gained a hard-fought win in that first encounter, and they did it again last night.

The Generals were the first to score. Shileeka Williams fed Victoria Seabrooks, and the center from Mexico, NY put in a short jumper. FM answered with a field goal. Aniya Webb sank a three, and Herkimer led 5-2. However, Webb, who is the leading assist maker in Region 3 (5.5 per game), was assessed two personal fouls in the first three minutes of the game. She had to be benched for a while, and the team missed her playmaking.

The first 10 minutes were well played by both squads. Herkimer's Samantha Randio sank four free throws in less than two minutes. That was a sign of what the Generals were going to do from the stripe.

Photo: Victoria Seabrooks scoring the first basket of the game

Alyssa Craig made a nice baseline drive for two points. Herkimer led 14-12.

The visitors took a three-point lead as the midpoint of the period approached, but Alexia Brown hit two FTs, making the score 17-16.

FM stepped up their game in the final five minutes. The teams left the floor with the Raiders ahead 28-22.

wbball 02 08 2013 WebbWhitney Brown always plays hard. She drove for a basket to open the second half, but was fouled. Brown sank both free throws. The team was doing well from the line, and they were going to do even better. The Generals ended up shooting an impressive 22-for-30 from the stripe.

Williams and Webb provided threes. More good free throw shooting put the Generals ahead 35-33. Alyssa Craig nailed a three. 38-35.

Photo: Aniya Webb scoring from beyond the arc

It was a tense and thrilling second half. The Raiders are a good, solid team, and the Generals were playing them on even terms. The visitors seemed to be a bit stronger offensively, but the Herkimer Five were playing very good, tenacious defense, including determined rebounding at the Raider end. And when the taller Raiders fouled them, the Generals were making FM pay with fine free throw shooting.

Webb put in a nice jumper from the right side, and the score was 40-40. FM's Kassandra Flowers sank a three, but Herkimer's Randio grabbed an offensive rebound and scored. 43-42 FM. Then the Generals took the lead when Seabrooks set a pick that let Webb drive into the paint and score. 44-43 Herkimer.

The visitors went all out, and they gained possession when they tied up Whitney Brown after she pulled down a defensive rebound, but more good defensive play by the Generals kept them from scoring.

Williams hit for two after Randio stole the ball. Herkimer led 47-43, but FM's Flowers sank another three-pointer. 47-46. Randio was fouled and sank both shots of a one-and-one. 49-46.

Randio came up big again in the final seconds. She read an FM pass, intercepted it, sprinted 65 feet and was about to score but was fouled. With 5.1 seconds on the clock, Randio sank both shots and sealed the 51-46 win.

After the game Coach Gouger had praise for the team and stated, "We make plays late in close games. This team finds a way to win when we need one."

It was a major win for the Generals. Both Herkimer and FM are vying for the #3 seed in the postseason Regionals. Last night's win will have to be given serious consideration by the seeding committee.

Herkimer has six remaining games in the regular season. Their next game will tip off at 1:00 p.m. on Sunday at SUNY Adirondack. That contest had been scheduled for Saturday but was pushed back one day because of the expected storm.

Nick Scribe, website writer

Herkimer scoring: Randio 14, Williams 5, W. Brown 11, Webb 10, Seabrooks 4, A. Brown 2, Craig 5 – Total 51

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