AMHERST — Brooke Wallace is a Division I college prospect. She’s also her own harshest critic.
After Wallace dominated the paint in Amherst’s 58-40 non-conference win over Clearview, the 6-foot-1 junior talked about what she was unable to get accomplished in the game.
Wallace scored 12 points, grabbed 10 rebounds, blocked five shots, snared four steals and handed out five assists to lead the Comets, but she couldn’t shake the thought of the opening minutes of the game when she missed her first four shots from the floor.
“It was really slow tonight and there wasn’t a lot of energy … especially from myself … to start the game,” Wallace said. “I didn’t finish a lot of the shots that I usually finish because I wasn’t as focused as I should have been. I need to pick that up because it’s the end of the year and we have tough games coming up.”
It was a strange start to a game that never seemed to get into any type of rhythm. Just 36 seconds into the game the fire alarm went off, meaning both teams had to leave the floor and the gym had to be cleared.
It was a false alarm as an errant basketball in the auxiliary gym set off the alarm, and after a six-minute delay the game was restarted. The Comets started slowly, connecting on just three of their first 11 shots, but a 9-0 run early in the second quarter gave them a 22-7 lead.
The Clippers (6-12) never really got things going offensively in the first half. They hit just seven of 19 shots and had 16 first-half turnovers against the Amherst press.
The Comets led 31-16 at intermission.
“I told the girls at halftime that we shot our own foot off,” Clearview coach Nick Dimacchia said. “I didn’t think we played horrible basketball, but we weren’t effective offensively and we threw a lot of bad passes. You aren’t going to complete too many passes when you throw it at someone’s feet, and we did a lot of that. That’s indicative of what we’ve been doing for the last 15 games.”
With 3:42 left in the third quarter, a Casey Jasinski jumper cut the Amherst lead to 38-24, but the Clippers could get no closer.
“In the second half I thought if we could have gotten a few more stops we could have been right there,” Dimacchia said. “It was a 14-point game and if we could have gotten a couple of stops we could have been back in it.
“I don’t know what we shot from the free throw line, but that didn’t help. Turnovers and missed free throws are going to kill you all day long.”
Mallory Sliman scored 10 points and snared nine rebounds for the Comets (8-11) while Sarah Elliott and Natalia Joseph added nine points each.
While Wallace was tough on herself, she gave effusive praise to Sliman.
“Mallory has more heart and determination than anyone,” Wallace said. “People might not know as much about her and it’s like she’s always proving a point out there. She does a great job, never gives up and plays incredibly hard. She’s really underrated.”
Comets coach Kevin Collins wasn’t worried about Wallace’s slow start.
“She was trying to go back to her right hand way too much and she was fading a little bit,” he said. “We challenged her at halftime to work some moves to her left hand. She came out and hit on an up-and-under, and that got her going. She’s the kind of player that needs a couple to go down to get into the flow of things.”
Contact Mike Perry at 329-7135 or email@example.com.
Amherst 58, Clearview 40
CLEARVIEW (40): Janeil Hawthorne 0-2-2, Katelyn Jones 0-0-0, Tahjanae Coleman 5-2-12, Megan Woods 1-5-7, Raquel Santana 2-0-4, Tiana Mitchell 2-0-4, Casey Jasinski 3-0-6, Kelli Warren 0-1-1, Claudia Feicks 1-0-2, Myrranda Adkins 0-0-0, Abby Klein 1-0-2, Jourdan Stone 0-0-0, Shay Halitzka 0-0-0. Totals 15-10-40.
AMHERST (58): Sher Champe 2-0-4, Brianna Crappo 1-1-4, Mallory Sliman 4-2-10, Gabrielle Basinski 0-2-2, Brooke Wallace 5-2-12, Sarah Elliott 4-1-9, Natalia Joseph 3-3-9, Sydney Roule 0-0-0, Sydney Click 1-2-4, Zoe Papay 0-0-0, Olivia Henderson 1-0-2, Jayla Hall 1-0-2, Bailey Lunsford 0-0-0. Totals 22-13-58.
Clearview 4 12 11 13 — 40
Amherst 11 20 16 11 — 58
Three-point goals: Clearview 0-6, Amherst 1-4 (Crapo). Field goals: Clearview 15-45 (33.3 percent), Amherst 22-51 (43.1 percent). Free throws: Clearview 10-21 (47.6 percent), Amherst 13-23 (56.5 percent). Rebounds: Clearview 30 (Coleman 5, Santana 5), Amherst 40 (Wallace 10, Sliman 9). Turnovers: Clearview 22, Amherst 14. Total fouls: Clearview 16, Amherst 24. Fouled out: Champe.
Junior varsity: Amherst, 43-10.