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Saturday, March 18, 2017: Ossining survives challenge from Mercy

   Leading off today: Junior Kelsey Quain tallied 19 points to lift Ossining to a 76-70 win over Our Lady of Mercy in the NYSPHSAA girls Class AA basketball semifinals Friday at Hudson Valley Community College.

   Quain scored 17 second-half points to keep the Pride's bid for a record fifth consecutive state large-school crown alive.

   Ossining was buoyed by Andra Espinoza-Hunter and Kailah Harris in the first half, with the duo combining for 30 of the team's 35 points. The Pride trailed by one heading into the fourth quarter, but a 3-pointer from Quain less than two minutes in put the Pride up for good.

   Espinoza-Hunter finished with a game-high 32 points after learning earlier in the day she had been selected co-recipient of the Miss New York Basketball award from the Basketball Coaches Association of New York.

    • Aziah Hudson converted six 3-pointers in scoring 27 points to lead Baldwin to its first trip to the state finals with a 60-46 win over Shenendehowa.

   Baldwin defeated Ossining in the Slam Dunk Tournament earlier this year, snapping the Pride's win streak against New York State Public High School Athletic Association opponents at 88 games.

   "We always like playing teams that beat us," Ossining coach Dan Ricci said. "(Albertus) Magnus beat us, (Baldwin) beat us, if can beat them, we get Mary Louis and they beat us -- we like to play them all."

   Class A: Jamesville-DeWitt outscored Elmont by a 41-9 margin in the second half and advanced to Saturday's title contest with a 70-42 win.

   Meg Hair scored a game-high 27 points, including 14 in the third quarter as the Red Rams overcame a 33-29 deficit attributable to the Spartans' 64 percent shooting. Hair had six 3-pointers including four in the third quarter.

   "She's an amazing shooter," Elmont's Kem Nwabudu, who scored 10 points, told "It's a real talent to be able to shoot like that."

   Jamie Boeheim scored 19 points as the defending champs earned a spot in their fourth straight Class A state championship game. Julia Kelner finished with 14 points for J-D.

    • Meanwhile, Pittsford Mendon remained perfect through 26 games by eliminating Somers 53-41. Senior guard/forward Sara Lyons scored 11 of her 17 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Vikings attack. She scored eight points in a decisive 13-3 push to open the fourth quarter.

   Eighth-grader Lexi Green added 12 points in the victory.

   Somers went up 31-26 in the third quarter, but Mendon scored seven straight capped by a short jumper from sophomore Alana Fursman to go up 33-31.

   Mendon then took control with a 13-3 surge in the fourth quarter.

   Class B: Irvington is heading to the finals for the first time since 2013 after a 69-57 win over Fredonia on the strength of Lindsay Halpin's 26 points.

   Junior forwards Kelly Degnan and Heather Hall added 17 and 11 points, respectively.

   "The motto is, 'Do it for Halpin,'" Degnan told The Journal News. "She's been on this team for four or five years, so we're really doing it for her."

   Fredonia kept it interesting by scoring 31 third-quarter points behind 9-for-9 shooting from the field. Irvington was whistled for 10 team fouls in the third quarter, which helped Fredonia make it a six-point game heading into the fourth quarter.

   Fredonia junior Katie Price finished with 29 points in the loss.

    • Guards Lexi Levy (21 points), Hanna Strawn and Ava McCann combined for 10 3-pointers and 52 points to lead Binghamton Seton Catholic to a 79-54 rout of Beekmantown.

   McCann scored the game's first nine points, hitting three 3-pointers in the first 90 seconds. The Saints led 25-12 after one quarter and 47-22 by halftime.

   Seton Catholic advances to a state final for the first time since winning the Class C title in 2005.

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