MAYVILLE – Jenna Einink scored a game-high 30 points and pulled down a school-record 32 rebounds Wednesday night, and the Chautauqua Lake Lady Thunderbirds (16-0, 12-0) needed every bit of it, as they held on to defeat the Panama Lady Panthers (7-10, 6-6), 59-51, in overtime during CCAA Division 3 girls basketball action.
“On that end of things, she was absolutely huge,” Chautauqua Lake head coach Eric Schuster said of Einink. “She really does control the boards for us, but sometimes I think we depend on her too much.”
In the overtime period the Lady Thunderbirds outscored the Lady Panthers, 11-3, helping them finish with a perfect record in divisional play.
Courtney Hewes chipped in nine points while Ashton Albanesius had 16 rebounds. Tara Hunt had 10 rebounds and four points in the win.
Chautauqua Lake took a 15-11 lead after the first quarter, but Panama fought back to outscore the Lady Thunderbirds, 17-13, in the second, forging a 28-all tie at halftime.
The Lady Panthers took a two-point lead into the fourth quarter, 36-34, but could not hold on, as Chautauqua Lake used a 14-12 edge over the final eight minutes to force the overtime period.
“We’ve played three games in a row, closer games than we’re used to,” Schuster said. “I don’t think it was a bad thing, but we need to start playing better. Hopefully we’re getting our confidence back a little bit. We played better in overtime for sure.”
For Panama, Carly Abate had a team-high 16 points while Brittany Lenart chipped in 12 points and six rebounds. Also for the Lady Panthers, Brianna Marsh had seven points and hauled down a team-high 11 rebounds while adding four assists and four blocks to her stat line.