TROY Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk's bid to send off girls basketball coach Bruce Stott with a Section II Class B title fell short.
Four clutch points from Mikayla Deguire in the final two minutes helped Watervliet fend off Ravena 43-35 in Saturday's championship game at Hudson Valley Community College.
It was the final game for Stott as Ravena's girls basketball coach. Stott is retiring after the school year.
"I know they were trying very hard not just for them but for me as well, and I tried very hard to help them reach this goal," said Stott.
The Lady Indians (15-7) rallied from a 16-point deficit to trim the Cannoneers' lead to four points before Deguire sank a pair of free throws with 1:32 left in the fourth quarter.
The play that sealed Watervliet's sixth Sectional title in seven years came on its next possession. Ailayia Demand held the ball near midcourt to let as much time run off the shot clock as possible. Demand then dribbled around and through several Ravena defenders before passing the ball inside to a wide open Deguire, who hit a layup with 50.3 seconds left to make the score 43-35.
"We hadn't had a basket in several possessions, and we were getting frustrated out there," said Demand.
Demand was a force at both ends of the court in the first half. The senior guard scored 15 points and added three steals to help Watervliet (20-2) build a 27-12 halftime lead.
Watervliet continued to make things difficult on Ravena's offense in the second half. The Cannoneers defended the lane well, and their guards pressured the Lady Indians into missing three-pointer after three-pointer.
"They did a great job of shutting down Hope Reboer and our three-point shooters, and they did a great job of stopping the penetration of Kayla Hotaling," said Stott.