By Jeremy McDonald
SALEM, Ore.– Amity’s defense had to work extra time after their 10-0 hot start to the game as their offensive shots couldn’t fall with De La Salle North Catholic slowly chipping away at the Lady Warriors lead on numerous occasions throughout the game.
Early in the third, Amity led 28-18 before the Knights made one of their runs that got De La Salle North Catholic down three with two to go in the quarter. Keeley Graham hit a long-two to push the lead to 30-25. But costly turnovers almost allowed De La Salle to almost tie the game down 30-27.
The press of the Knights was working well against Amity to get De La Salle North Catholic back into the game against the Warriors.
“It was pretty hard, they’ll trap in the back court and it was hard to get through the trap after we took our dribble and picked it up. So we just had to make the long, hard pass to get through that,” said Allyssa Plummer, who finished with seven points in the 49-42 win. “Just moving the ball fast across court. Once we broke their press, it was 3-on-2 back in the backcourt so that helped us a lot just moving the ball and throwing it ahead.”
The Amity defense stepped up once more as they had all game long that led to Keeley Graham and Kaia Rosenbaum extended the lead to 34-29 entering the fourth quarter.
Graham hit a free throw to make it 35-29, Knights answered, Maylin Williams hit a three that was followed up by a Graham lay-in 40-34 six to go.
“I think once one person, if we get a steal or something it brings everyone else up. We just bring each other up and get some energy going,” said Williams, who had eight rebounds in the win to go with her eight points.
De La Salle got it to four, Graham pushed to six. Back to four with 3:45 left in the game, the Warriors had to find ways to keep the Knights as the score stayed at four entering the final three minutes of the game.
Neither team could extend or reduce the lead before Allyssa Plummer converted an And-One to push the lead to 47-40 with 1:53 left in the game.
A defensive stand allowed Graham to ice the win at the line with a pair of free throws to make it a then-49-40 with 1:17 left.
“We got to come out in the first quarter swinging and after halftime, we can’t get down. We can’t get into our heads and pick each other up,” said Williams.
Graham had 13 points and five rebounds, Hannah Hatch had eight points in the win as Amity awaits the winner of Salem Academy-Santiam in the 6:30pm Green Bracket Championship game.