Sunday, February 25, 2024

Fourth quarter surge leads Berkshire past Cardinal

MIDDLEFIELD—For three quarters, Cardinal played rival Berkshire nearly even.

Unfortunately for the Huskies, the Badgers went on an 18-5 fourth quarter run to pull out a 47-30 victory.

“We kind of unraveled there in the fourth quarter,” said Cardinal coach Luke Kruse. “It was a close game through three quarters and we got totally outplayed in the fourth quarter. We turned the ball over unforced, missed shots and we got in foul trouble and got silly fouls when we were in the double bonus. It just wasn’t a smart way to play if we had any hope of making a little comeback there.”

Rachel Breckenridge scored nine of her game-high 12 in the final eight minutes for the Badgers, who also converted on 9-of-12 free throws in the fourth as they pulled away from the Huskies.

“A lot of things I thought would get the job done for us tonight just unraveled in the fourth quarter,” Kruse said. “Every time we had a little momentum we weren’t able to convert shots on the other end and that kind of took the wind out of our sails at the end of the game.”

Berkshire led just 11-8 after the first quarter an 23-18 at halftime.

“I thought the girls executed pretty well in the first half. We were right there,” Kruse said. “One of our main points was to limit Kayla White’s chances down low and I thought they did an excellent job on that.”

White scored six of her 11 points in the first 16 minutes but Madison Chapman picked up the slack as she scored six of her eight in the first half.

Cardinal had several chances in the first half to add to their score but the shots weren’t falling.

“Unfortunately, at the beginning of the game, especially with Berkshire, I think a lot of that is the nerves and emotions of playing Berkshire on your home court in front of a big crowd,” Kruse said. “I bet we make most of those shots in any other game, but they missed some shots too that they should have made in the first quarter so it probably evened out. It just came down to who was going to execute better in the fourth quarter and Berkshire out-executed us by a wide margin down the stretch.”

Camille Cummins led Cardinal with 11 points while Adriana Naples pitched in with six and Brittni Lawrence finished with five.

Berkshire spoiled Cardinal’s Senior Night but the loss didn’t diminish the impact Hanna Traggiai and Virginia Travers have had on the Huskies program.

“Hanna is someone who plays with her hear ton her sleeve game in and game out. She has helped us win a lot of games,” Kruse said. “She was a huge part when we beat Berkshire on our home court last year and some of our wins this year. She brought a lot to the table. Virginia has battled injuries but she increased her playing time and minutes because she’s smart and dedicated and a great teammate and person. We’re sorry we didn’t win for them but that doesn’t take away from what they contributed to our program.”

Berkshire 47, Cardinal 30

Berkshire: Caponi 2, Breckenridge 12, White 11, Borse 4, Chapman 8, Boyk 10

Cardinal: Cummins 11, Naples 6, Lawrence 5, Traggiai 4, Gubanyar 2, Pollack 2

Berkshire 11 12 6 18 — 47
Cardinal 8 10 7 5 — 30

Free throws: Cardinal 4 of 9, Berkshire 16 of 29; 3-pointers: Cardinal 0, Berkshire 1 (Breckenridge 1)


Steve Hare
Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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