East Rutherford’s girls clinched at least a share of the Mountain Foothills 7 Conference regular-season title on Tuesday.
Not without quite a battle from Polk County.
The Wolverines kept pace with the Cavaliers for almost three quarters, eventually dropping a 68-52 decision in Bostic.
Polk County fell to 12-9 overall, 7-4 in conference play. East Rutherford ended its regular season at 22-2, 11-1.
How it happened: The teams battled to a 16-16 tie at the end of the first period, with Kylie Lewis scoring eight points in the quarter to pace the Wolverines.
A Brianna Gray three-point play with 6:34 left in the second quarter made it 21-20 in East’s favor. At that point, the Cavaliers held the Wolverines to just two baskets the rest of the quarter – a Lewis layup at the 6:17 mark and a Bailey Staton basket with 2:09 to go – in building a 35-24 advantage at the half.
But the Wolverines roared out of the dressing room with an 8-1 run, pulling with 36-32 with 5:44 to go on a Staton jumper from the wing. Momentum, though, switched back to the Cavaliers, who responded with a 9-0 run to grab a 45-32 edge.
Polk County kept the deficit around 10 points deep into the fourth quarter before the Cavaliers pulled away late for the final margin.
Scoring: Lewis had 17 points to lead Polk County, with Staton finishing with 13.
Mia Bradley added nine points, with Gray scoring seven, Charley Dusenbury adding four and Gavionna Carson scoring two.
Next up: Polk County travels Friday to Brevard for its final regular-season game of the season. The Wolverines will clinch sole possession of third place in the MF7 with a win, while a loss would leave Polk and Brevard tied for third.