AMSTERDAM — Until it mattered most, Sophie Tougas was a non-factor at the offensive end in Thursday night’s Foothills Council basketball game between division leaders Glens Falls and Amsterdam.
“In the first half she had three threes go in and out,” Glens Falls coach Mark Girard said after his Indians dealt the Rams their first league loss 63-56. “I told her to stay with it. ‘They were going to fall.’ ”
Tougas scored 19 of Glens Falls’ final 30 points after Amsterdam pulled even at 33 late in the third quarter, including a big 3-pointer with 55 seconds left that all but sealed the contest that pitted state-ranked teams.
Tougas’ late-game effort overshadowed a brilliant comeback by Amsterdam (7-1, 10-2), which trailed 24-7 late in the second quarter.
“I was thinking we had to pick up the momentum,” Tougas, a sophomore, said after her 23-point showing. “We just had to get our heads into it and play or hardest.”
Lucy Tougas had 13 points, nine rebounds and seven assists for Glens Falls (8-0, 11-2), with the last of those assists going to her younger sister on that’s clutch 3-pointer from the top of the circle that made it 61-53.
“My sister drew the defense to her and I just shot it,” Sophie Tougas said.
Sophie Tougas created the final margin with a pair from the line as Glens Falls improved to 3-2 against Amsterdam since the Rams joined the Foothills Council in the 2014-15 season. No other Foothills team has beaten Amsterdam since then.
“It’s always a good test,” Sophie Tougas said of the budding rivalry. “We both bring out the best in each other and play our hardest.”
Nina Fedullo had 19 points and 14 rebounds for Amsterdam, and Maria Lomanto delivered all 15 of her points in the third quarter to spark the Rams comeback. Lomanto’s four 3-pointers in the quarter came in a 19-7 surge that pulled the Rams even at 33.
“Once she hit one we ran a a couple of things for her,” Amsterdam coach Eric Duemler said of his senior guard.
A layup and two free throws by Fedullo tied the game before Sophie Tougas scored Glens Falls last eight points of the third quarter. The 10th-grader, who led Glens Falls to the Section II Class B title last season, had a trio of 3-pointers among her 11 fourth-quarter points.
“You could see the pop in her step,” Girard said. “The ball wasn’t flat any more.”
Sophie Tougas scored on a second-quarter putback and on a third-quarter drive before her offensive assault which began with a 3-pointer that broke the 33-33 tie.
“Every time we got close Sophie hit a 25-footer or a contested shot,” Duemler said.
Sophie Tougas said her sister, a senior, played a significant role down the stretch.
“She’s the one who brought everyone together and calmed everyone down,” Sophie Tougas said. “She’s like the general out there, and everyone stepped up.”
Felicity Williams hit a 3-pointer to give Glens Falls a 49-39 lead in the last quarter. Amsterdam three times got within three points after that only to have Glens Falls answer on a 3-pointer by Sophie Tougas, a layup by Taylor Scarincio and a jumper by Lucy Tougas.
Scarincio finished with 14 points and four steals, all of those thefts coming in the first half when Glens Falls piled up 12 of them.
“The kids could have folded after they [Amsterdam] made their run,” Girard said. “We fought back.”
Amsterdam battled back after falling behind 14-2 at the first break and 26-14 at the half. That first half which included a late 7-0 run in the second quarter saw the Rams commit 20 turnovers.
“I’m very pleased with the way we clawed back dealing with adversity,” Duemler said.
Giuliana Pritchard, averaging 13 points and 12 rebounds, missed the game for Amsterdam due to an illness.
“That No. 1 [Lomanto], she did amazing,” Sophie Tougas said. “Her and Nina and their whole team came together.”
Glens Falls lost to Amsterdam in the 2014-15 regular season and earned a payback win in the Foothills overall championship game. Glens Falls beat Amsterdam in the 2015-16 regular season and the Rams avenged that setback in the league’s title game. Both teams are on course to meet again for the overall Foothills crown.
“If we’re blessed to be in that position, we’ll be looking forward to it,” Duemler said.
Amsterdam, last season’s Section II Class A runner-up to Averill Park, had lost only to Simsbury, Conn., prior to Thursday game.
Moses 1-0-2, Williams 2-3-8, S. Tougas 6-7-23, Hogan 1-0-3, L. Tougas 5-3-13, Scarincio 6-2-14. Totals: 21-15-63.
Lomanto 5-1-15, Flint 1-0-3, Santiago 2-0-6, N. Fedullo 5-9-19, Liverio 0-2-2, Catena 2-5-9, E. Fedullo 1-0-2. Totals: 16-17-56.
Glens Falls 14 12 15 22 — 63
Amsterdam 2 12 23 19 — 56
Three-point goals: Williams, S. Tougas 4, Hogan, Lomanto 4, Flint, Santiago 2.
Reach Gazette Sportswriter Jim Schiltz at 395-3143, [email protected] or @jim_schiltz on Twitter.