Late free throws lead MAU past Hoosick Falls

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BENNINGTON — With Mount Anthony clinging to a three-point lead in the final minute of its game against Hoosick Falls, senior Taryn Cassano was fouled and sent to the line for a 1-and-1 opportunity.

"I was pretty nervous, but I also felt I could make the free throws," Cassano said. "I was confident in myself, but I was definitely nervous."

Cassano made both free throws as part of a career-high nine points, and the Patriots held off the Panthers, 39-34, on Monday night at Kates Gym.

"My adrenaline was going pretty good, but I was confident and knocked them down," Cassano said.

After three quarters, Mount Anthony led 28-25, but Logan Thayne made short work of the advantage, scoring six of her game-high 27, the last a three-pointer with 4:45 left in regulation to tie the game at 31-31.

Thayne had a big game and nearly recorded a triple-double. She scored 27 points, added 14 rebounds and had eight blocks. On a few other MAU shots, she significantly altered the trajectory of not only the shot but the shooter.

Over the next two minutes, MAU senior Grace Mahar hit on back-to-back layups to give the Patriots the lead back at 35-31 with 1:21 left and MAU coach Larry Andrews took a timeout.

Mahar led Mount Anthony with 22 points and she now sits at 944 for her career.

On the ensuing possession, Thayne missed the first of a pair of free throws to cut it to a 3-point game with 71 seconds to go.

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Hoosick Falls coach Rich Cooney had little choice but to tell his team to foul and they did, putting Cassano on the line with 42.7 seconds left.

"We had to foul, we didn't want to foul Grace, but we had to do it quickly," Cooney said.

Andrews said Cassano is one of the better free throw shooters on the team.

"On the inbound, it was going to either Grace, Emilie [O'Brien] or Taryn," Andrews said. "We executed and she made the free throws."

The Panthers came down and broke the press, and Sophie Estes scored on a layup underneath to make it a 3-point deficit again, but MAU broke the Panther press and Rachael Jones scored for the final margin.

"We want them to shoot the ball, that's what we practice and that's what we want them to do," Andrews said.

Mount Anthony is 2-8 after winning its second game in a row and they'll face Rutland on Wednesday.

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The Mount Anthony JV gave the Patriots a pair of victories over Hoosick Falls, as they won a close one, 31-27, right before the varsity tip.


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