WILMINGTON – St. Mark’s rallied to take a brief one-point lead late in the first half of their girls’ basketball game on Dec. 27 against Wilmington Friends, but the Quakers scored the next eight points to take control. Friends went on to the 52-43 win over St. Mark’s in the opening game of the Diamond State Classic at the St. E Center.
The Spartans trailed, 18-9, early in the second before making their biggest run of the morning. Angel Lorang came off the bench to provide a spark for the Spartans, nailing two field goals and a pair of free throws as St. Mark’s rallied. Her second bucket, a scoop shot, gave her team its first lead at 19-18. St. Mark’s also held a 21-20 lead before Friends regained the momentum.
Natalie DePaulo hit a pair of free throws, and Alice Irwin scored to make it 24-21 Quakers at the half. Friends also scored the first four points of the third quarter, taking advantage of several St. Mark’s misses to extend the lead to 28-21.
The Spartans trailed, 35-29, heading into the final stanza, and Friends helped itself with superb foul shooting. DePaulo and Jayna Jones did most of the free-throw scoring, and midway through the fourth the Quakers held a 48-37 lead. Friends finished 21 of 28 from the charity stripe.
But the Spartans would not quit. Kayla Wolff got one back on a free throw, and a few seconds later she picked up a steal and converted it into a transition layup to cut the deficit to eight. But the Quakers were able to withstand the Spartans’ press to go on to the win.
Wolff and Lorang each scored 11 for St. Mark’s, which fell to 1-3. The Spartans have little time to rest, as they will meet Perryville (Md.) in the third-place game of the New Castle Insurance Cup bracket on Wednesday at 10:45 a.m.
For the Quakers (1-2), DePaulo led the way with 23 points, including 14 of 18 on free throws. Jones added 14, six on foul shots. Wilmington Friends advances to the championship game of the New Castle Insurance Cup on Wednesday at approximately 4 p.m. against Cape Henlopen.