Mcgonagle's Clutch Play Seals Win For Vanguards Sun Valley Is Alone In First Place After The 10-point Performance Of The Sophomore Forward Helped Beat The Bucs.

Posted: January 25, 1993

Megan McGonagle is like most basketball players: She wants to score.

However, with standout players such as Nikki Sheeky and Valerie and Vanessa Worrell, and with the way sophomore guard Lauren Sipple has improved her outside shooting, the Sun Valley sophomore forward does not get much chance to score.

In the shrill din of a packed Interboro gym Wednesday, McGonagle took the chances presented her. She scored 10 points and hit a game-clinching layup with eight seconds left to hand the Vanguards a tense 60-50 Del-Val League victory over a fiesty Interboro team.

"I would like to score more, but I know I'm not going to be a superstar

because we don't have any on our team," McGonagle said.

Sun Valley (15-2 overall, 5-0 league) took sole possession of first place in the league. Interboro (9-5, 4-1) suffered its first league loss of the season.

Sheeky led all players with 21 points, and Valerie Worrell added 12 points and 17 rebounds. Interboro was led by Barb Gardener, who scored 20 points, including four three-pointers. Amy Hummel scored 17 and Erin O'Neill 11.

"They always give us a good run," Sheeky said. "This was for pride. We're defending the league title. We've won it the three previous years I've been here, and believe me, this year isn't going to be any different."

A difference in the game was shooting. Sun Valley, using the superior height advantage of Sheeky, who is 6-foot, Val Worrell, who is 6-3, and Vanessa Worrell, who is 6-0, made a collective 26 of 50 shots from the field. Most of those points came inside the lane, on second and third chances.

Interboro, a considerably shorter team, had to rely on its outside shooting and its fierce end-to-end press, which caused 25 Sun Valley turnovers. The

Bucs made just 18 of 63 shots in the game, with Gardener, Hummel and O'Neill making all the shots.

"Our shooting hurt us," Interboro coach John Livingston said.

"I thought we shot a little scared in the first quarter. Hopefully, what we take from this game is we could stay with Sun Valley but stay with them

from the beginning of the game. This was a test of heart for my kids, and I found out the heart of this team."

Down by deficits of 36-17 and 48-29, Interboro kept surging back, behind the shooting of Gardener and Hummel.

It closed within 56-50 with 1 minute, 41 seconds to play. But a pair of turnovers in the closing minutes and McGonagle's layup helped preserve the victory for Sun Valley.

"This loss hurts, because you come so close and then it feels like it was ripped right out from under you," said Gardener, who played the whole game and was key in keeping the Bucs' chances afloat. "Their height was the difference. It sure wasn't the intensity or the will to want it."

Disappointed and evidently tired, Gardener pointed to the bruises and marks on her knees from sliding on the court diving for loose balls.

"Yeah," she said, working up a smile, "I must have ripped away nine layers of skin today."

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