Spartans build early lead, hold off Pandas rally


For The Dialog
MILLTOWN – The St Mark’s Spartans had a second quarter to remember in their Catholic Conference matchup with Padua on Jan. 5. They outscored the Pandas 19-5 in the second, then held on for a 40-34 win.
basketballThe first quarter saw a lot of missed shots by both teams and both defenses played great. The score was 4-4 until Kara Dougherty hit a big three to start the second quarter, and the Spartans dominated. Sophomore Kayla Wolff had a big quarter, scoring 10 points including a perfect four-for-four from the charity stripe. The Spartans were able to set up their full-court pressure and capitalize off steals. Kendra Schweizer had back-to-back baskets, and Delaney Carrey hit a bank shot to give the Spartans a 23-9 halftime lead.
Pandas junior Bella Julian caught fire in the third quarter as the Pandas went on a 10-3 run to cut the lead to 30-24. The Pandas’ run started when Schweizer was on the bench with foul trouble, and the Padua defense was fueling the offense. The Pandas continued to claw away in the fourth quarter, and a Hailey Scott basket cut the Spartans’ lead to 34-33 with 2:16 left. The Spartans set up a great play after a timeout and Schweizer found Wolff for a big lay up.  Angel Lorang also added a lay up as the Spartans got the big win.
St. Mark’s has won two straight to improve to 3-3 on the season. Wolff scored 16 points, including eight of 10 from the foul line. The Spartans host A.I. duPont on Saturday at 130 p.m. The Pandas(2-5) got 12 points from Julian but struggled at the foul line, making just three of 10. They host St. Elizabeth on Saturday at 1:45 p.m.