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Sports Archives The Altamont Enterprise, January 15, 2009
In first home game, Bulldogs beat rival Schenectady Christian
By Jordan J. Michael
BERNE The BKW girls’ basketball team hosted a familiar rival Friday on its home floor.
Bulldog Head Coach Tom Galvin told The Enterprise that his team and Schenectady Christian have been fighting for first place in the Western Athletic Conference over the past few years. “It goes back and forth like a tug of war,” he said.
BKW finished second place to Christian last season, but the Bulldogs looked like the more experienced team on Friday, beating Christian, 43 to 36. Schenectady didn’t look to have much of a chance.
“Schenectady Christian is a very strong team that usually gives us trouble,” said Galvin, the 14-year coach. “But we’ve been very good as well. It’s a quality battle that brings the best out of my team.”
With winter break and snow days, it was the first game BKW had played in a couple of weeks.
It was a big night for Falcons’ senior Ashlyn Slater, who was shooting for the 1,000-point club during the game. “We tried not to let that stat bother us,” Galvin said. “We held her to 14 points and she didn’t get the record. We didn’t want to be the team she set the record against.”
The Bulldogs were led by 16 points from senior guard Andrea VanDyke. She made four three-pointers during the game. Tomi-Lee Springer added another nine points and grabbed key rebounds.
“VanDyke is spending her fifth season with me on varsity,” said Galvin. “It’s funny, I brought her up for a game against Christian when she was in eighth grade. She’s the glue for this team. She came to me in the second half and told me she wanted the ball.”
“Springer is a huge presence in the paint and she had a few big two and ones down low,” Galvin said. “Some people have questioned our post play, but I think we do well down there.”
BKW had a 16-to-11 lead over the Falcons as the first quarter came to a close. “We attacked them right out of the gate,” said Galvin.
Jocelyn Mann and Amber Pitcher converted two quick buckets for the Bulldogs in the early moments of the second quarter to increase the lead to nine. VanDyke eventually drained a three for a 25-to-15 advantage.
Slater sank a jumper at the halftime buzzer for Schenectady Christian. BKW was playing with more aggressiveness and had a 27-to-20 lead at the mid-point. Galvin told The Enterprise then that he expected his team to play hard and come away with the win.
The coach would not be disappointed.
The Falcons started to close the gap in the third quarter and got as close as two after a baby hook shot by Bethany Goodrich. Springer then completed a three-point play at the line after she was fouled down low.
VanDyke put another three through the net to give BKW a 35-to-25 lead with 3:42 left in the third session. “The first home game is important and my team was just too hungry to lose,” said Galvin.
The Bulldogs got two more three-pointers from VanDyke and the team had a comfortable lead going into the fourth quarter, 41-27.
BKW scored only two points in the final quarter, but kept the ball out of the hands of Schenectady Christian. The defensive play led to the fouling out of Springer and Mann.
“We struggled to score in the fourth but we had the game in control,” Galvin said. “It was a game of runs, up and down the court. I will admit that we did play overly defensive in the last quarter.”
VanDyke made two free throws at the end of the game to close it out. The Bulldogs won, 43 to 36, moving its record to 4-2.
BKW hadn’t played since a 57-to-29 victory in Schoharie on Dec. 23. “I was worried that we might be a little rusty,” said Galvin.
The team is currently in the middle of a three-game road trip that ends at Duanesburg on Friday.
“We can win a lot of games if we play our cards right,” Galvin said. “We need to attack the rim athletically and play smart. We have a one-game-at-a-time philosophy.”