Lady Wildcats capture Finger Lakes East D-II basketball title

Gary Pinneo

The Marcus Whitman Girl’s Basketball team defeated Pal/Mac 43-40 last Tuesday night in Palmyra to clinch the Finger Lakes East D-II Championship outright with a 10-5 league record.  The teams entered into Tuesday’s contest tied with identical 9-5 records.  It was winner take all.

The Lady Wildcats jumped to a 14-9 first quarter lead but the Red Raiders whittled the difference to 23-21 at the half.  Whitman held a slim one point advantage going into the final stanza. 

Ashley Bardeen calmly sank two free throws with 23 seconds left in the game to ice the victory for the jubliant Lady Wildcats. This huge Whitman win was keyed by their pressuring defense that effectively shutdown the hometown Raiders when they needed to. 

Bri Dunton scored 16 points to lead the Lady Wildcats in scoring. She also hauled down eight rebounds and had five big steals.  Ashley Bardeen pulled down 12 rebounds to go along with her six points. 

Danielle Turner had two huge steals in the hectic fourth quarter.  She also delivered 11 points. Rachel Northrup added six points for the girls from Whitman.

The win upped the Wildcat’s overall record to 15-5.  The Finger Lakes East D-II title was Marcus Whitman’s first since 2001-2 when they shared the title with Mynderse.

 The Whiman girl’s team are seeded # 2 in the Section V Class BB Tournament.  They will play the #10 seeded Waterloo Indians at home on Thursday evening, Feb. 21 at 7 p.m. Marcus Whitman is ranked #8 in the New York State Small School Poll.