Southern Huntingdon had scoring contributions up and down the scorebook with 10 players providing points during Wednesday evening’s non-league contest against Juniata High in Mifflintown. The Rockets got off to a great start, but had to overcome a disappointing second quarter and bounced back with a strong second half to finish off a 71-46 victory.
The win was Southern Huntingdon’s ninth straight, improving the Rockets to 12-3 overall. The Indians, who have lost 15 of their last 16 outings, slipped to 3-15 on the season.
Jenny Cantrell did most of her scoring in the second half, but led the Rockets with a game-high 26 points. Olivia Wilson followed with 13, while Alexis Buckley and Majerle North finished with eight apiece.
Mackenzie Bennett fronted Juniata with 20 points, including 12 in the second quarter, while Talon Walton followed with 13.
“Our press created a lot of chaos in Juniata’s offense and we were able to again get some turnovers and easy baskets,” commented Rocket head coach Ramonda Zinobile. “We weren’t as patient tonight, but we were still able to get some quick points. However, the second quarter was a different story. we looked tired and struggled defensively to get into position.”
North had six of her points in the opening period and Buckley and Wilson added four apiece to help give Southern Huntingdon an 18-6 lead at the quarter. However, Bennett’s 12 points in the second enabled the Indians to trim the deficit to 27-24 heading into the intermission.
“We knew Bennett was their go-to player and we lost track of her at times, but we were able to fix that problem in the second half,” noted Zinobile.
Southern Huntingdon came out on fire in the second half with 22 points apiece in the third and fourth quarters. Cantrell, who had five assists in the first half, fed off the Rocket press for 15 points in the third and helped Southern build a 49-36 advantage. Cantrell finished with nine points in the fourth and Wilson four, while Walton posted eight for the Indians.
“We just came out of the half more fired up and did a good job adjusting on Bennett and held her to just six points in the second half,” concluded Zinobile. “Other than the second quarter when we feel into a slump, we played a very solid game with nice defense in the second half. We were able to zero in on Bennett and shut her down.”
There was no junior varsity game.
Southern Huntingdon is home today for a crucial ICC South contest with Tussey Mountain. The junior high tips off at 4:30 p.m. with the varsity to follow at 5:45 p.m.