HANCOCK - Dollar Bay was in the lead at halftime of its non-conference game with Hancock Tuesday night.
Four points from Mariah Marcol ignited a 6-0 run to close the second and put the Bays up by six (15-9) at the break.
But the momentum of the game changed locker rooms during halftime, and it was a whole different Bulldog team in the third.
Hancock’s Ashlyn Kero (20) drives the baseline on Dollar Bay defenders Mariah Marcol (52) and Julia Daavettila in the third quarter Tuesday night. (DMG photo by K.D. Warvie)
Hancock outscored Dollar Bay 14-4 in the third to take a lead it wouldn't relinquish en route to a 34-28 victory.
"As much as I didn't want to use youth as an excuse, I thought that showed in the first half," Hancock coach Matt Dennis said. "By the time the third quarter came around the girls were ready to play ball.
"Instead of being passive they were aggressive and they pushed the issue. Everybody stepped up and made some big shots, and that opened up our main options."
Hancock 5 4 14 11 - 34
Dollar Bay 7 8 4 9 - 28
Hancock - Ashlyn Kero 7, Taylor Murray 2, Lily Williams 9, Maria Almquist 16; FT: 3-4; Fouled out: None; Fouls: 9; 3-point field goals: Almquist 3, Kero, Williams.
Dollar Bay - Julia Daavettila 8, Brittany Engman 5, Danielle Benson 5, Mariah Marcol 10; FT: 3-4; Fouled out: None; Fouls: 9; 3-point field goals: Engman.
Lily Williams and Maria Almquist started the quarter with back-to-back 3-pointers that leveled the score at 15. Almquist, who led all scorers with 16 points, knocked down three shots from beyond the arc in the contest.
Two more back-to-back conventional hoops from Almquist and Williams put Hancock in front to stay at 19-15. Almquist and Williams combined for 12 of the Bulldogs' 14 points in the period.
After a basket from Marcol trimmed the lead back to two (19-17), Williams dropped in another bucket to push the lead back to four. A hoop from Ashlyn Kero closed out the run and kept Hancock in front by four (23-19) after three.
The Bulldogs tried to break the game open several times in the fourth quarter but couldn't shake the pesky Bays. Every time Hancock would push its lead to five, Dollar Bay would answer and cut it back down to three.
A hoop from Danielle Benson closed the gap to three a first time at 25-22. After a basket by Almquist upped the margin back to five a second time, Benson scored again to slice it back to three.
Another hoop from Julia Daavettila cut the lead to three (29-26) one final time. But Dollar Bay would get no closer than that the rest of the way.
"They never quit," Dollar Bay coach Harvey Filppula said of his team. "They continued to play hard. I told the kids in the locker room that they left nothing on the floor, so I can't ask for any more.
"We probably should have done a better job of adjusting defensively a little earlier in that third quarter. They beat us with some bombs and it was really tough to climb back."
Marcol led the Bays with 10 points. Daavettila chipped in eight for Dollar Bay.
K.D. Warvie can be reached at kwarvie@ mininggazette.com.