Turnovers and inefficient shooting proved to be costly in Pascack Valley’s 63-36 loss to River Dell at home on Thursday night.
The game started with both teams trading baskets until the game was tied at nine apiece halfway through the first quarter. However, River Dell began to pull away, ending the quarter on a 12-2 run that was sparked by forcing a number of turnovers on the defensive end.
River Dell’s strong defense continued in the second quarter, as the Indians were only able to come up with three points the entire frame. The lack of offense was uncharacteristic of Valley, whose total of 36 points marked a season low.
“Their defense was excellent,” head coach Jeff Jasper said. “River Dell played harder, played better, [and] did every aspect of the game better than we did.”
In the second half, Valley’s offense began to show signs of life as junior guard Lexi Hort came off the bench and contributed two three-pointers in the third quarter. Hort proved to be Valley’s biggest bright spot in the loss, finishing with 11 points and hitting three of four shots from behind the three-point line.
“[Hort] has seen and will see more playing time as the season [goes on],” Jasper said. “She played well and I hope she continues to play well.”
Despite the efforts from the Indians’ offense in the third quarter, the lead was too much to overcome as River Dell continued to pour it on from beyond the arc. River Dell connected on five three-pointers in the third quarter, thus making it difficult for the Indians to gain any sort of momentum.
River Dell’s dominance on both sides of the ball carried into the fourth quarter, securing the dominant win for the Golden Hawks. The victory secured the Big North Patriot League for River Dell, who improved to 12-4 on the season.
“We were tied for the league going into this game,“ Jasper said. “River Dell [came in here and played like they wanted the game.] They came here to play.”
With the loss, the Indians fell to 13-6 and will look to bounce back on Tuesday in Demarest against the 10-7 Norsemen.