Presque Isle girls defeat MCI in ‘B’ North quarterfinal overtime victory

6 years ago

BANGOR, Maine — With the game on the line, there is no other player than Presque Isle’s Emily Wheaton that Wildcat coach Jeff Hudson would want to have the ball.

The talented senior guard responded to yet another challenge as she helped rally the No. 5 Wildcats (14-5 overall) to a 58-53 overtime victory over No. 4 Maine Central Institute Saturday morning in a Class B North quarterfinal.

Presque Isle advances to the semifinals on Wednesday, Feb. 21 at 3:35 p.m. against the winner of No. 1 Hermon/No. 8 Caribou. MCI finishes its season with a 13-6 record.

Madison Michaud of Presque Isle leaps into the air to snatch the ball during a Class B quarterfinal game against MCI Saturday at the Cross Insurance Center. (Staff photo/Joseph Cyr)

Wheaton led all players as she poured in 36 points, including four 3-pointers and a near-perfect 12-for-13 show from the free throw line to carry the Wildcats to the win. Wheaton was 7-of-7 from the charity stripe in the overtime period alone.

Teammate Savannah Rodriguez, a junior, chipped in eight points and hauled in multiple rebounds for the Wildcats.

For MCI, April McAlpine tossed in 14 points, including a pair of 3-pointers, while Sydney Farrar added 11 and Sydney Morton chipped in 10.

“When you have the best player on the court on your team, you have a pretty good chance to win (the game),” coach Hudson said of Wheaton’s performance.

Wheaton admitted she felt a little bit of pressure in Saturday’s game, particularly late in the contest with the game on the line and her going to the free throw line.

“I practice my foul shots all the time, so I think I felt ready for the situation,” she said. “I think we had some nerves to get out (early in the game) but we kept our composure, especially at the end, and that is all the matters.”

Both teams started Saturday’s game cold from the floor, as neither team could find the bottom of the net. MCI finally broke the scoring ice after four minutes ticked off the clock when Christa Carr hit from about 6-feet out for the game’s first points.

Presque Isle needed a bit longer to get going, and found that offensive spark Maddie Jandreau, who came off the bench to hit a pair of 3-pointers.

“Maddie came in, hit those shots and that got us going,” coach Hudson said. “I think Emily (Wheaton) was putting too much pressure on herself early.”

The Wildcats led by as many as seven points late in the third quarter, but MCI rallied back in the fourth quarter, using an 11-0 run to take a 39-34 lead. The two teams exchanged baskets for much of the fourth quarter, with the Huskies leading 46-43 in the waning seconds.

Wheaton drained a 3-pointer from the corner with 19 seconds left to send the game into overtime.

In the extra period, the Wildcats capitalized on their foul shooting expertise making eight-of-nine free throws to ice the game.