ATHENS — Sullivan County used an 18-6 fourth-quarter run to blow open a
close game on its way to a 41-26 win over Athens here Monday night in
non-league junior varsity girls basketball action.
Sullivan County led 8-4 after the first eight minutes, then extended the lead to five points, at 15-10, at the half.
The junior Wildcats trimmed the deficit to three points, at 23-20, entering the final eight minutes. Natalee Watson led the way in the third quarter with four points.
Mya Thompson and Watson led Athens with six points apiece, and Karlee Bartlow and Abby Champion added four points each.
Watson and Braelynn Wood led Athens with three rebounds apiece, while Emma Bronson had four assists and two steals, Bartlow had two steals and two assists, and Thompson registered three blocked shots and two steals.
Stella Harney led Sullivan County with 19 points, including 11 in the second half.
Athens 31, Troy 21
At Troy, Athens raced out to a 16-point lead en route to a 31-21 win over Troy Saturday at the Troy Commons Building.
Karlee Bartlow scored seven points, and Braelynn Wood added four markers to power Athens in an 11-0 first-quarter run.
Bartlow added four more points in the second quarter to fuel a 10-5 spurt that gave the junior Wildcats a 21-5 lead at the halftime intermission.
Bartlow scored 16 points to lead Athens, while Emma Bronson had six points, four rebounds, two assists, and two blocked shots, Wood added six points, and Mya Thompson contributed five rebounds, three steals, two assists, and two blocked shots.
Athens, now 3-4, hosts North Penn-Liberty Wednesday.
TROY — Athens overcame some first-half shooting woes to post a 51-22 win
over Troy here Saturday afternoon in NTL Large School Division girls
basketball action at the Troy Commons Building.
“We struggled early making open jump shots,” said Athens coach Brian Miller. “But, we got our legs under us and made some nice shots and executed much better in the second half.
“And, shooting 19-21 from the foul line was outstanding,” added Miller.
Senior Kayleigh Miller scored four points in the first quarter, and senior Megan Collins added a 3-pointer to help Athens to a 9-4 lead after the first eight minutes.
Miller canned a 3-pointer and scored five points in the second quarter as Athens added two points to its advantage, taking an 18-11 lead into the halftime locker room.
Junior Caydence Macik took over in the second half.
Macik scored eight points in the third quarter, and Miller added four points to account for all the Lady Wildcats’ points in a 12-5 run that pushed their lead to 30-16.
Macik added nine more points, including a 5-for-5 effort from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter, and Miller added six points in a 21-6 blitz that blew the game open.
“Emma Bronson had a good second half,” said Miller. “She played the passing lanes, and was finding girls in transition.”
The Lady Wildcats made 13 of 14 free-throw attempts in the fourth quarter, and 19 of 21 in the contest. Miller was 8 of 9 from the line, and Macik made 7 of 8, while sophomore Emma Bronson and sophomore Braelynn Wood were both 2-for-2.
Macik led Athens with 21 points, 13 rebounds, four steals, and two blocked shots, while Miller had 19 points, six rebounds, and four assists, and Collins added five points, a team-high six assists, and four boards.
Sophomore Karlee Bartlow grabbed seven rebounds in the win, while Bronson had four steals, and three rebounds, and sophomore Natalie Watson chipped in with four boards.
Sydney Taylor led Troy with 11 points and Hannah Zimmerman was 7-for-8 from the free-throw line for seven points.
Athens, now 6-1, returns to action Monday when it hosts Sullivan County — the first of three home games next week for the Lady Wildcats.
TIOGA JUNCTION — Athens exploded for 47 first-half points, and cruised
to a 62-23 win over Williamson here Thursday night in NTL girls
“Caydence (Macik) and Kayleigh (Miller) shot the ball great tonight,” said Athens coach Brian Miller. “We had over 20 assists as a team, so that shows we executed our offense and shared the ball with each other.”
The Lady Wildcats shot 57 percent (26 of 46) from the field, with Macik making 10 of her 13 shots, and Miller knocking down 8 of her 13 shots, including 3 of 6 from behind the three-point arc.
Miller canned a pair of 3-pointers and scored 12 points in the first quarter, and Macik added six points to fuel a 23-6 first-quarter run.
Macik scored eight points, and Miller added seven points in the Lady Wildcats’ 24-8 blitz that pushed the lead to 47-14.
Macik had 21 points, six rebounds, six blocked shots, and two steals, and Miller had 21 points, three rebounds, three assists, and two steals to lead the Lady Wildcats.
Sophomore Karlee Bartlow had eight points, three assists, and two steals in the win, while Natalee Watson scored six points, senior Megan Collins doled out a team-high six assists, sophomore Emma Bronson dished out five assists, and freshman Mya Thompson grabbed three rebounds, and blocked one shot.
Lateisha Peterson led Williamson with 11 points, and Taylor Rae Jones added 10 points.
Athens, now 5-1, returns to action Saturday at Troy in a noon start.
MANSFIELD — The Athens defense held North Penn-Mansfield scoreless for
nine minutes to start the game, and built a 16-point halftime lead en
route to a 52-25 win here Tuesday night in NTL Large School girls
The first quarter was a defensive struggle with NP-Mansfield playing a defense designed to stop Athens senior Kayleigh Miller.
“Mansfield came out and played box-and-one on Kayleigh most of the game,” said Athens coach Brian Miller. “We adjusted from the second quarter on to get some good offensive looks.”
Senior Megan Collins buried a 3-pointer and junior Caydence Macik added a bucket to give the Lady Wildcats a 5-0 lead after the first eight minutes.
Macik scored five points, including an old-fashioned three-point play, and Collins knocked down another 3-pointer in the second quarter to fuel a 16-5 blitz that put Athens up 21-5 at the break.
In the third quarter, senior Kayleigh Miller buried a pair of 3-pointers, and Macik added four points as Athens added one point to its lead, taking a 34-17 advantage into the fourth quarter.
Macik scored eight points in the final eight minutes and Miller added four as Athens put the game away with an 18-8 run.
Macik led Athens with 20 points, nine rebounds, three steals, and one blocked shot, while Miller had 12 points, six steals, and five rebounds, and Collins added eight points and four assists.
Natalie Watson chipped in with four points and four rebounds in the win, while Mya Thompson had four rebounds and three steals, and Karlee Bartlow dished out four assists.
“Freshman Mya Thompson played a good game floor game tonight,” said Miller.
Elizabeth Kohl led NP-M with six points.
Athens, now 4-1, returns to action Thursday at Williamson.
MANSFIELD — North Penn-Mansfield held a slim lead after the first eight
minutes, but pulled away thanks in large part to a 14-5 third-quarter
run for a 38-23 win over Athens here Tuesday night in NTL junior varsity
girls basketball action.
The junior Tigers led 9-8 after the first quarter, and 17-12 at the half, before stretching their advantage to 31-17 heading into the final eight minutes.
Mya Thompson led Athens with seven points, five rebounds, and three steals, while Karlee Bartlow had five points, two assists, and two steals, and Natalee Watson had five points and seven rebounds.
Abby Champion added three rebounds and two blocked shots for the junior Lady Wildcats, while Braelynn Wood grabbed four rebounds, and Izzy Davis had three boards.
Athens, now 2-3, returns to action Thursday at Williamson.
WELLSBORO — Athens overcame ice-cold shooting, thanks to a stingy
defense, and rallied for a 28-22 win over Wellsboro here Saturday
afternoon in NTL Large School girls basketball action.
“We played a very good defensive game today,” said Athens coach Brian Miller. “Our offense struggled to make shots, but our defense kept us in the game, and we did make some keys shots down the stretch.
“It wasn't pretty, but a win is a win,” added Miller.
The Lady Wildcats, now 3-1, shot just 21 percent (9 of 42) from the field in the win, including an 18-percent (2 of 11) performance from behind the three-point arc.
Athens led 7-6 after the first eight minutes, but were outscored, 9-3, in the second quarter, and Wellsboro went to the halftime locker room with a 15-10 lead.
Senior Kayleigh Miller, who had five points in the stanza, and senior Megan Collins each knocked down a 3-pointer, and sophomore Karlee Bartlow converted an old-fashioned three-point play to fuel an 11-6 spurt that tied the game at 21-21 entering the final eight minutes.
The Lady Wildcats turned up the defensive intensity in the fourth quarter and allowed the Lady Green Hornets just one free throw. Meanwhile, senior Rachel Stephens and junior Cayden Macik scored buckets to put Athens up 25-22.
Macik made 3 of 4 free throws down the stretch to seal the win.
Macik led Athens with eight points and four boards, while Barlow had eight points and five rebounds, Miller had five points, four rebounds, four assists, and two assists, Collins had five points, three rebounds, and two blocked shots, and Natalie Watson chipped in with three rebounds.
Emma Coolidge led Wellsboro with seven points.
Athens, now 3-1, returns to action Tuesday at North Penn-Mansfield.
BLOOMSBURG — Bloomsburg raced out to a big lead early, an cruised to a big win over
Athens here Wednesday night in non-league junior varsity girls
Maize Aikey scored 12 points in the first quarter to fuel a 23-2 Bloomsburg blitz. Abby Champion scored Athens’ only bucket.
Braelynn Wood scored four points in the second quarter, and Karlee Bartlow added a pair of free throws, but Bloom used a 17-6 run to stretch the halftime advantage to 40-8.
The junior Panthers outscored Athens, 22-0, in the second half for a 62-8 win.
Wood led Athens with four points, and Mya Thompson had four rebounds, while Aikey led four Bloom scorers in double-figures with 17 points.
Athens, now 1-2, returns to action Saturday at Wellsboro.
ATHENS — After a back-and-fourth four quarters of action, Athens scored
the first seven points in overtime to pull out a 58-53 win over
Northeast Bradford here Monday night in NTL girls basketball action.
The Lady Wildcats improve to 2-0 with the win, and coach Brian Miller said Saturday’s game paid dividends Monday night.
“It was nice to have a game under our belt,” he said. “I needed it as a coach to see how some of my younger girls — meaning Emma (Bronson) and Karlee (Bartlow) — would react at the varsity level.
“As the game went on, you see their confidence level grow, and you could see them feel their way into the game.
“We held Lauryn Jones to three points, which is a great accomplishment, and that was mostly Karlee and Emma,” added Miller.
Junior Maisie Neuber picked up the slack for Jones, scoring 30 points and hauling down 11 rebounds.
“Next time, we have to do a better job on (Maisie) Neuber, she had a great game,” said Miller. “She was good last year … she has turned into an elite player.”
Opening the season at Athens was a tough chore, noted Beebe.
“I feel awesome about how our girls played. They never gave up,” said Beebe. “Coming into this gym on the first night of the season … with just five practices and you draw Athens, that’s tough.
“I couldn’t ask for anything else, well a win, I guess,” laughed Beebe, “The girls played great.”
Athens led by as many as five points three times in the first half, but Northeast fought back to take the lead each time.
Conversely, the Lady Panthers built a six-point lead early in the fourth quarter, but Athens rallied to take the lead before the game went into overtime.
“We’ve played Northeast three times since the start of last season, and two of the three have gone to overtime,” said Miller.
“It was a game of momentum. We’d take a five-point lead, and they’d come back to tie it. They would take a five-point lead, and we came back to tie it.
“It shows you what type of teams both of us have,” noted Miller. “We can get our backs against the wall, settle in, and battle back.”
“It’s a great win,” added Miller. “I told the girls (Northeast) is the best team by far (in the Small School Division), maybe the best team in the league, along with Towanda, if you take us out of the equation, so that’s a good win.”
NEB coach Ben Beebe expressed similar sentiments.
“One thing I love about playing one of Brian Miller’s team, is that it’s always good basketball,” said Beebe. “Both teams went on runs, and both teams answered.
“Both teams played good defense, you can’t really ask for a better game,” he noted.
“Tough games like this make you better,” Beebe added. “I’ll take a game like this any day of the week. I can’t wait to play Athens again in a month.”
Miller, who canned four 3-pointers, paced Athens with 25 points, including a 7-for-7 effort from the free-throw line. four steals, and four assists. She scored 17 points, including all seven free throws, in the fourth quarter and overtime.
Macik added 12 points, 10 rebounds, five blocked shots, and three assists in the win, while Stephens had seven points, seven rebounds, and three steals, Bartlow added six points and three steals, and Collins chipped in with five points and three assists.
Alena Beebe banked in a 3-pointer from the top of the key to open the scoring and Neuber added a pair of buckets, sandwiched around scores by Macik, to give the Lady Panthers a 7-4 lead.
Stephens then scored back-to-back buckets — the first off a nifty high-low assist from Macik, and the second on a fast-break assist from Miller — to trigger an 8-0 spurt that put the Lady Wildcats up 12-7.
Neuber scored five straight points on a long two-point jumper and a 3-pointer to tie the game at 12-12 with 1:02 remaining in the first quarter.
Macik banked in a runner with 6 seconds remaining to give Athens a 14-12 lead after the first eight minutes.
NEB scored the first five points of the second quarter, but Miller and Collins knocked down consecutive three-pointers, and Macik added a bucket on a textbook screen-and-roll assist from Miller in an 8-0 spurt that put the Lady Wildcats up 22-17 with 1:20 remaining in the first half.
Neuber scored with 2 seconds remaining in the first half to cut the NEB halftime deficit to 24-21.
Beebe, Kayleigh Thoman, and Neuber scored consecutive buckets to open the second half, giving NEB a 27-24 lead with 6:21 left in the third quarter.
After the teams traded buckets, Collins canned a 15-foot jumper, and Miller drained a 3-pointer to give Athens a 31-29 lead with 1:21 remaining in the third quarter.
Neuber made four straight free throws to give NEB a 33-31 lead with 33 seconds left in the third quarter, but a free throw by Bartlow cut the Athens deficit to one point heading into the final eight minutes.
Jones drained a long 3-pointer on NEB’s first possession of the fourth quarter, and moments later Neuber gave the Lady Panthers their biggest lead of the game — at 38-32 — after turning a steal into a fast-break lay-up with 7:25 left in regulation.
Athens answered with six straight points — the last five coming on a pair of free throws and an old-fashioned three-point play by Miller — to tie the game at 38-38 with 4:44 left in the fourth quarter.
The teams traded points until Beebe drained a 3-pointer with 3:01 remaining in the fourth quarter to give NEB a 45-42 lead.
After a free throw by Macik, Miller banked in a 3-pointer with 2:12 left in regulation to give the Lady Wildcats a 46-45 lead.
Neuber, off a feed from Thoman, gave NEB its final lead of the game, at 47-46, with 59 seconds left in regulation.
Athens’ ensuing possession nearly ended in disaster when a low-post entry pass intended for Macik went off her hands. As she fell out-of-bounds, she deftly batted the ball back in-bounds, where Miller fielded it cleanly near the top of the key, and buried a 3-pointer to give Athens a 49-47 lead with 38 seconds remaining.
After Neuber tied the game with a shot from the low block, Miller’s potential game-winner was blocked with 5 seconds remaining, sending the game into overtime.
Neither team was able to score on its first two possessions in overtime, but Bartlow put Athens ahead with a free throw, following her steal in the paint under the NEB bucket and subsequent coast-to-coast drive.
Following another NEB turnover, Miller drove baseline for a lay-up with 1:47 remaining in overtime to make it 52-49.
After a defensive stop, Athens made six of eight free throws, including three by sophomore Emma Bronson, to seal the win.
Miller was pleased with the contributions of every player that stepped on the floor.
“After Kayleigh banked in the three, Karlee had a nice drive for a basket, and Emma made three out of four free throws in overtime,” he said. “We had girls get some big rebounds and loose balls down the stretch.
“It’s a team game,” Miller added. “We’re more than just two girls, we have to play five girls on the floor — they all have to rebounds, they all have to communicate and play defense, and we did that tonight.”
Neuber added 11 rebounds to go along with her 30 points for the Lady Panthers, while Thoman and Beebe, who knocked down a pair of 3-pointers, scored eight points apiece, and Kate O’Connor added four points.
Athens returns to action Wednesday at Bloomsburg.
ATHENS — Northeast Bradford used an 18-7 second-period run to take
control on its way to a 35-12 win over Athens here Monday night in NTL
girls junior varsity basketball action.
The junior Panthers led 4-2 after the first 10-minute period, but Emma Neuber scored six points and Alena Beebe, Julia Brown and Meg Russell each added four points in the decisive run that extended the lead to 20-9. (The game was played in three 10-minute periods.)
Neuber scored seven more points in the final period, and finished with a game-high 13 points. Beebe added six points in the win.
Karlee Bartlow led Athens with six points, and Abby Champion added a 3-pointer.
Athens, now 1-1, returns to action Wednesday at Bloomsburg.
WESTFIELD, Pa. — Athens held Cowanesque Valley scoreless for more than
17 1/2 minutes and scored 44 consecutive points on its way to a
season-opening 69-14 win here Saturday morning in NTL girls basketball
“It’s always good to get the first win under your belt,” said Athens coach Brian Miller. “We knew we were playing a young and inexperienced opponent. We just wanted to get sharp with the things we do because we’re playing a good Northeast (Bradford) team Monday night.
“It was good to get out there and play against someone else besides ourselves at practice.
“I thought we played an all-around good game,” added Miller. “We played good half-court defense, and we executed offensively against their man-to-man defense.”
The Lady Wildcats recorded 19 assists as a team and only 12 turnovers.
“We made the extra pass, and got some girls some easy baskets with that extra pass,” said Miller. “I thought we shared the ball very well.”
Seniors Megan Collins and Kayleigh Miller gave Athens an early 4-0 lead, then Paisley Nudd scored CV’s only bucket of the first half with 6:02 remaining in the first quarter to trim the deficit to 4-2.
Athens created several turnovers and easy buckets in transition, and pounded the offensive boards to scored the final 18 points of the opening stanza to take a 22-2 lead.
The run included the first varsity points for sophomore Karlee Bartlow and freshman Mya Thompson, as well as six points by junior Caydence Macik.
The onslaught continued in the second quarter as Macik scored six more points, Collins added four points, and Miller knocked down a 3-pointer in a 17-0 blitz that made it 39-2 at the half.
The Lady Wildcats scored the first nine points of the third quarter to extend the lead to 48-2 before Jana Quick ended the CV drought with a free throw with 4:24 remaining.
Miller drained a pair of 3-pointers in the third quarter to finish with three in the game, giving her 173 for her career, which puts her tied for second on the program’s all-time list with MaryEllen Onofre, who is her father’s cousin. Mallory Hafer is the school’s all-time leader with 203.
Macik led Athens with 23 points, seven rebounds, five steals, and one blocked shot, and Miller pumped in 20 points, to go along with seven rebounds, four steals, and three assists.
Collins stuffed the stat sheet with 10 points, seven assists, five rebounds, and five steals, while Bartlow added 10 points and four assists, Thompson chipped in with four points, three rebounds, and one blocked shot, and senior Rachel Stephens grabbed nine boards and had three steals.
Abby Ackley led CV with seven points.
Athens returns to action Monday evening when it hosts NEB. The varsity games tips off at 6 p.m., with the junior varsity game to follow.
ATHENS — The Athens Lady Wildcats rode defense to an NTL Championship
last year, and with a great deal of experience returning in 2021, coach
Brian Miller said this year’s team will look to use the same formula.
“We are very good in half-court man-to-man defense — we are known for that,” said Miller. “We talk very well, we switch on screens, we hedge on screens … if you’re going to score on us, you’re going to earn the two points. We don’t make many mistakes in our half-court defense.
“We’re also known for running our sets in the half-court very well to get the best scoring opportunities.
“We’re not a run-and-gun team, and we’re not a pressing team, although with with (newcomers Emma) Bronson and (Karlee) Bartlow being so athletic, it gives us more speed on the floor, which may allow us to get out and press,” noted Miller. “We will trial-and-error that throughout the year, where we will pick our spots to press, but it’s not going to be 32 minutes of full-court pressing and fast-break offense.
“The reason we won last year is we were very, very good defensively,” Miller added. “We kept the score low, and we executed offensively.”
The Lady Wildcats, coming off a 22-6 season, return seniors Kayleigh Miller, who was NTL Player of the Year last year, and Megan Collins at guards, and senior Rachel Stephens and junior Caydence Macik, who is a two-time all-league performer, at forwards.
Senior Hannah Blackman, and sophomores Karlee Bartlow and Emma Bronson are battling for the fifth starting spot.
“The fifth starter will probably rotate throughout the year, depending on match-ups,” said Miller.
“Bronson and Bartlow are point guards who play good defense, and Blackman is a shut-down defender,” he noted. “If we need Hannah to start and shut someone down, it’s a good option to have.
“We’ll be down two girls the first few games — one is quarantined and the other is injured,” added Miller. “The girls further down the bench will have to step up the first few games.”
Miller’s varsity numbers are down a bit, but says it hasn’t effected his team’s depth.
“I’m happy with the girls we have. I think we can go 10 deep.
“Some of the girls are inexperienced,” said Miller. “Hopefully, the girls we have back are experienced enough, and I’m smart enough as a coach not to put those (inexperienced) girls in situations that are uncomfortable for them, until they start gaining confidence.
“I think our depth is fine,” added Miller. “We have scorers — and I think girls like Rachel Stephens and Megan (Collins) that really didn’t score in the past will step up their game. I’ve already seen them in practice look to be more offensive minded.”
Miller expects freshman Mya Thompson and sophomore Braelyn Wood to see time as well in their first varsity season.
“Both girls are in the tweener position — not really guards or post players,” said Miller. “But they can do a lot of good things. I feel comfortable putting them in to play defense, get some rebounds, and to run our plays and set screens for our scorers.”
Sophomore Natalie Watson will also vie for time in the low post.
“Natalie should give us some quality minutes in the paint,” said Miller. “She’s a presence and a good rebounder.”
One area that has Miller’s attention is point guard.
“I think right now point guard is my biggest source of concern,” he said. “I think we would have ironed that out over the spring and summer, but unfortunately Covid hit, so we really couldn’t figure out what was the best fit for the offense.
“It would have been nice to see how Emma Bronson and Karlee Bartlow progressed over the summer as varsity point guards. We’ll slowly get them in there and see how they do,” noted Miller. “If we have issues, we can always slide Kayleigh (Miller) to the point, but the best thing for the team is to keep her at the 2-guard.
“She’s a scorer, we want the ball in her hands,” continued Miller. “We want her to come off screens, run screen-and-rolls with Caydence (Macik) because (opposing teams) won’t double down on her with Kayleigh and Megan (Collins) on the perimeter, so that will give Caydence a lot of opportunities to score for us.”
AROUND THE NTL
“I would say it’s a three-team race in the Large School, and a one-horse race in the Small School,” said Miller.
Large School Division
“I would say Towanda returns the largest core of players from last year’s team,” said Miller. “They have a new coach in Rob Gentile, who has a great deal of experience, and a new system.
“Wyalusing is probably next in line,” he noted. “They have a good core group back.”
Small School Division
“Northeast Bradford is going to be the team to beat again with Lauryn Jones and Maisie Neuber,” said Miller. “I think Canton is the next best team in the division, and they lost their best player.