WATERFORD — The Saratoga Springs girls’ basketball team got the bounce-back win it was looking for Thursday after roaring back early and late in its matchup with Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake at the Impact Holiday Showcase.
The Blue Streaks erased a 13-point deficit in the first half and overcame a four-point margin in overtime to clip the Spartans 54-53 in a physical and entertaining non-league game that pitted Suburban Council representatives.
One Saratoga player after another triggered key runs during regulation, and Ella Gennoy sank two baskets in overtime including a deciding layup with 47 seconds left.
“It all just happened so fast,” said Gennoy, who has gone from a sophomore reserve to a key junior in the Saratoga lineup. “We were just trying to push the ball down court and get an easy basket.”
Saratoga scored the final five points in overtime following a 6-2 push by Burnt Hills that made it 53-49, and came away with a gritty win after Wednesday’s 73-52 showcase loss to Penfield at the new Impact Athletic Center.
“You had two teams that kept answering each other,” Burnt Hills coach Gary Bynon said. “It was a great high school game, and we’ll both be better because of the situations we experienced.”
Carly Wise went 7 for 9 from the line and paced Saratoga with 23 points and 16 rebounds, Lauren Lafountain went 7 for 8 from the line and totaled 13 points and Natasha Chudy had 11 points and 15 rebounds.
“It was a team effort, honestly,” Saratoga coach Robin Chudy said. “This win gives us some momentum, and hopefully we can keep it going when we return to league play.”
Saratoga (5-4) got going in overtime after Ella Blesi’s steal and layup gave Burnt Hills its 53-49 lead, with the Blue Streaks making defensive stops, and Gennoy scoring on a putback, Wise sinking a free throw and Gennoy scoring again on her layup that was assisted by Logan Allen on a bounce pass.
Late in the fourth quarter, Gennoy had a chance to extend her team’s 46-45 lead, but she made one of two free throws which allowed Blesi to tie the game on a successful drive with 6.5 seconds to go. Afterward, Gennoy played the OT hero when she scored the last of her five points.
Burnt Hills missed three shots including a layup after Gennoy made it 54-53.
“Ella is super talented. She can shoot inside and shoot outside, and with those long arms she is very effective playing at the top of our zone,” Robin Chudy said. “We rely on her. She is so critical to our team.”
Saratoga played better as a team after falling behind 27-14 late in the second quarter.
“In the second half, we were moving the ball way better around the arc and in and out,” Gennoy said. “We were moving the ball, and our intensity was higher than it was.”
Wise scored five points in a 7-0 spurt to close the first half, and Lafountain netted seven points when Saratoga outscored Burnt Hills 15-9 in the third frame and pulled even at 36.
“The first half was one pass, one shot, and that made us easy to defend,” Lafountain said. “In the second half we were using each other.”
Wise scored six points in a 7-2 run to begin the fourth quarter as the Blue Streaks went up 43-38, and Burnt Hills closed the period with a 9-4 flurry to draw even at 46. Grace O’Connor and Peyton Felix both turned a steal into a layup to start that run.
“They went zone after they got behind, and that’s the first time we’ve seen it this year,” Bynon said. “It took us some time to figure out what we wanted to do.”
O’Connor scored 20 points to lead Burnt Hills (3-5), and the senior’s third 3-pointer was part of her team’s 6-2 overtime run. MK Lescault added 13 points, with the senior’s layups starting and finishing a 13-4 second-quarter run that made it 27-14. Eighth-grader Maggie Lescault contributed eight points.
“Some kids played great minutes for us,” Bynon said.
Burnt Hills lost to Our Lady of Lourdes in its showcase game Wednesday 55-45.
Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake 14 13 9 11 6 — 53
Saratoga Springs 10 11 15 11 7 — 54
Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake scoring: Blesi 3-0-6, DeBonis 1-1-3, Felix 1-1-3, Ma. Lescault 4-0-8, MK Lescault 6-0-13, O’Connor 7-3-20. Saratoga Springs scoring: Allen 0-2-2, Chudy 4-3-11, Gennoy 2-1-5, Lafountain 2-7-13, Wise 8-7-23. Scoring totals: Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake 22-5-53, Saratoga Springs 16-20-54.