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Cretton, Rock combine for 39, Niagara tames Wolverines, 49-25

(Matt McCarthy/Daily News photo) Niagara sophomore Josie Rock launches a three-pointer Tuesday night in the second half versus Crivitz at Niagara.

NIAGARA, Wis. — Senior Alyssa Cretton and sophomore Josie Rock combined for 39 points, as Niagara powered past Crivitz 49-35 in Marinette-Oconto Conference girls basketball Thursday night.

Cretton led all scorers with 22 points, while Rock drained four trifecta’s.

The Lady Badgers were cold from the field early in the game, and Crivitz jumped to a lead. Niagara was using their usual full-court press, but the Wolverines were breaking through it.

At the 10:20 mark in the first half, Crivitz called a timeout with the score 7-7. For the next four minutes or so, the game was see-saw, with Crivitz taking the lead back.

With about 3:30 to go in the first half, Cretton and Rock began stealing the ball in the Badgers’ press, with Crivitz not getting past half-court for several possessions.

“Our press works in spurts, I honestly don’t know why that is,” said Niagara head coach Karl Lamoreaux. “They had a good strategy to defeat our press, but we adjusted better and we took the middle lane away from them.”

Cretton’s athleticism was not only evident at point of the game, but in the second half as well. The burst of steals led to a 10-point swing to give Niagara a double-digit lead at halftime; a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.

“Alyssa got out and ran, she outruns everyone, and after a very close first half we had a 10-point lead at halftime,” Lamoreaux said.

In the second half, Niagara continued to put pressure on the Wolverines, which caused more turnovers and transition baskets for Niagara. At different points, Crivitz broke the press and got some good looks near the basket out of their half-court offense as the Badgers were trying out a newly installed defense.

“We gave up some points near the basket in the second half, and also didn’t rebound defensively like we could have,” Lamoreaux added.

The Badgers, who improve to 7-7 on the season, travel to Lena on Monday. Niagara was scheduled to travel to Gillett, but the Lady Tigers are in quarantine due to coronavirus precautions. Niagara then returns home to face Florence on Thursday night.

“It was nice to get a win tonight, we either win by a lot or lose by a lot. A young team needs close games like this,” Lamoreaux said. “This team doesn’t quit and is open for learning.”

Crivitz won the JV game.

Crivitz 21 14 — 35

Niagara 31 18 — 49

CRIVITZ: Jose-Bemis 3, Richlen 8, Werner 2, Guns 7, Welty 2, Sellen 6, Dudkiewicz-Napholz 1, Mueller 6; FT: 7-14; F: 16; Fouled Out: Jose-Bemis; 3-point FG: None

NIAGARA: Cretton 22, Allred 2, Pearson 4, Champagne 4, Rock 17; FT: 7-14; 3-point FG: Rock 4; F: 11; Fouled Out: None.

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