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Fast start by Plum halts Pine-Richland

| Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2013, 12:38 p.m.
Pine Creek
Louis Raggiunti | Pine Creek Chelsea Rourek and the Pine-Richland Lady Rams did all they could to break down the tall Plum defense.

In an effort to get some tough competition to prepare for section play, the Pine-Richland Lady Rams basketball team visited Plum.

The game didn't get off to the start Lady Rams coach Cliff Foster hoped for, but despite the 16-3 run by Plum to open the game and the 58-37 final tally, there were some positives Pine-Richland was able to take away.

“We were down, 22-3, at one point to start the game,” Foster said. “If you erase that, it was 35-34 the rest of the way. Wipe out that six-minute (span), and we are cool.”

One aspect of the game that was difficult for the Lady Rams was the pair of forwards the Lady Mustangs sported in 6-foot-3 Courtney Zezza and 5-11 Krista Pietropola, a matchup that favored Plum.

“This was an extension of our practice,” Foster said. “We came in and took a deep breath ... perhaps too deep.

“We have a lot of young girls, and Krista is a fantastic player for Plum.”

Despite the clear size advantage for Plum, Pine-Richland managed to get some tough points from the perimeter as well as in the paint.

Marisa Hombosky led the way with nine points, including a 3-pointer. Caitlin McMaster chipped in seven, and Chelsea Rourek added eight.

More important than the outcome of this game was the work against a rather tough team, and Foster noted that Section 3-AAAA, is the toughest there is.

“Our section is the best by far, and we wanted to win this game for our section, but the work against a good team is what we needed,” Foster said. “Sure, the loss hurts. Nobody likes to lose, but we won't be in the Valley of Death because we lost.”

Foster's optimism is justified. Pine-Richland defeated section-leading Oakland Catholic and doubled up North Hills, 50-25.

Despite a recent skid, the Lady Rams look to build their section win total as they visit North Hills at 7:30 p.m. tonight.

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