Submitted by Kelly Dillion
The Bishop Ludden High School girls basketball team lost its regional final for a second year in a row. The Gaelic Knights lost 47-35 to the second-ranked Class B team in the state, Section IV’s Susquehanna Valley, on March 11 at Binghamton’s Floyd L. Maines Veterans Memorial Arena.
Senior Danielle Rauch, Ludden’s all-time leading scorer for boys or girls basketball, ended her high school career.
The Knights were off to a positive start as they went into the second quarter 10-7. Junior center Aurora Deshaies handled the pressure from SV’s 6-foot-4 center, scoring 15 points for the game and contributing to the Knights’ success in the first half. Energized by Deshaies’ power, the Knights took a lead of 17-9 early in the second quarter. Ludden was shut out in the last four minutes of the half and went into halftime tied 19-19.
The Gaelic Knights fell behind in the third quarter and trailed by six entering the fourth. Rauch was taken out of the game due to an injury and SV took advantage, taking a 10-point lead, 40-30, with 4:30 to go in the fourth quarter. Once Rauch returned, she found Karleigh Leo for a 3-pointer to cut the lead to seven points, but with Rauch not 100 percent and limited time left, the Knights could not break a seven-point deficit. Bishop Ludden took Rauch and the other starters out with 4.2 seconds left, resulting in a standing ovation for the senior point guard, making her way to the University of Michigan next year.
Although the Knights are taking a major loss with Rauch, they are returning Deshaies, Katie Costello, Karleigh Leo, Amarah Steiff, Kaitlyn Kibling, and Lauren Petrie for the 2018-2019 season. They are hoping for a third consecutive sectional title, and much more!
Kelly Dillion is Ludden’s JV coach and assistant varsity coach