Lady Saints fall to StoneBridge guards

Published 11:03 pm Tuesday, December 16, 2008

StoneBridge’s backcourt duo of Caitlyn Unsworth and Danielle Cribb turned up the pressure on both ends of the court against Nansemond-Suffolk Monday evening and led the visiting Lady Cavaliers to a 54-32 win.

Cribb, StoneBridge’s point guard, played the biggest role in StoneBridge’s full-court press. In the middle two periods of the contest, the Lady Cavaliers held NSA to 10 points while forcing 17 turnovers. Cribb hassled NSA’s ball handlers, getting six steals; and ran StoneBridge’s offense smoothly, be it in fast-break chances or in half-court plays, finishing with eight points and nine assists.

Unsworth was StoneBridge’s primary shooting threat. Unsworth drained three three-pointers early in the game and finished with 15 points.

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The early stages of the game pointed to NSA hanging with StoneBridge. After the Lady Cavaliers got out to a 10-4 lead with two Unsworth threes leading the scoring, NSA scored five straight points. Freshman point guard Virginia Hassell scored seven of NSA’s first nine points in the game.

StoneBridge steadily stretched the lead through the rest of the first half as StoneBridge’s defense frustrated the Lady Saints more and more as the game moved on. The Lady Cavaliers won the second period 15-6 to take a 32-17 lead.

NSA’s defensive effort matched StoneBridge’s following the halftime break and the Lady Saints held their guests scoreless for the opening 5:20 of the third quarter.

Unfortunately for the Lady Saints, a three-pointer by Morgan Newhall was the only basket in that same stretch, so instead of making a big cut into StoneBridge’s lead, when the period ended StoneBridge’s lead was still 15 points, 36-21.

StoneBridge effectively closed the game out with a 13-0 run in the fourth period which took its lead to 51-22 with 3:53 remaining.

For NSA, Hassell finished with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Newhall had nine points and seven rebounds. Jenna Starkey had six points, seven rebounds and five steals. NSA outrebounded StoneBridge 36-31, but wound up losing the turnover category 28-15.

After seven games in a 13-day span to open its season, Nansemond-Suffolk (2-5, 0-0) is now off through the holidays and won’t take the court again until Tuesday, Jan. 6 at Greenbrier Christian in a non-Tidewater Conference game.