Dunmore Lady Bucks rolling at 23-0 to district title game


By Steve Svetovich

The Dunmore Lady Bucks are on a roll.

And veteran coach Ben O’Brien’s team survived an overtime in the Friday, February 25 District 2 Class 3A semifinal at Lackawanna College Student Union.

The Lady Bucks were able to pull off a 49-45 overtime win over the tough Riverside Lady Vikings.

The big win kept Dunmore’s undefeated season intact at 23-0 and earned the team a trip to the district title game Saturday, March 4 at noon at Mohegan Sun Arena against Holy Redeemer, who beat Mid Valley, 46-39, in a semifinal contest.

Erika Bistran made several key plays down the stretch and Gianna Delfino blocked a potential game winning 3-pointer at the end of regulation.


Senior Maddie Martin is the Lady Bucks’ leading scorer. (Credit: Rich Bank Photography)

Senior stalwart Maddie Martin scored 25 points and was clutch throughout the contest for the Lady Bucks.

Riverside (14-11) held a 37-32 lead after Shelby Slaboda hit on a jump shot with 4:24 left in the contest.

Dunmore came back quick on a basket by sophomore center Victoria Toomey and huge 3-pointer from Bistran who scored 13 points.

Natalie Sottile then hit a 3-pointer to put Riverside ahead, 40-37.

The undefeated season was being threatened, but the Lady Bucks wouldn’t quit. Bistran hit two free throws and then stole the ball leading to Martin’s 12-footer with 1:53 left in the thriller. Dunmore led, 41-40.

The scrappy Lisa Tallo made one of two free throws for Dunmore, but Riverside star Lizzy Spindler, who scored 12 points and had five assists, tied the game at 42 after driving to the hoop with 1:15 left.

The Lady Bucks played for the final shot, but Julia Antoniacci stole the ball for Riverside with five seconds left.

Dunmore fouled and the Lady Vikings called timeout with nine-tenths of a second left. An inbounds pass went to Antoniacci, who scored 15 points in the game, but Delfino swiftly and dramatically blocked the shot attempt sending the game into overtime and saving the undefeated record.

Martin hit two free throws with 2:13 left in the overtime giving Dunmore the lead.

Tallo hit another free throw. Then Bistran hit two more free throws, including the second that came after the lights went out due to a raging storm outside the facility.

Riverside kept its hopes alive on a long 3-pointer by Antoniacci with 2.9 seconds left.

However, Riverside received a technical for calling a timeout the team did not have. Martin then put the lights out for good, hitting on two free throws and the 49-45 win to advance to the district final and keep the undefeated season alive.

Delfino had nine rebounds and two blocks in the win. Tallo had three steals and three assists. Martin added three steals to go with her 25 points.

The Lady Bucks defeated Meyers High School, 50-18, in the District 2 Class 3A quarterfinal game Wednesday, February 22 at the Lackawanna College Student Union.

The stingy Dunmore defense held Meyers to 7-of-44 shooting from the field.

Martin led the a Lady Bucks with 19 points.

Delfino scored 11 points and added 12 rebounds and four blocked shots.

Tallo had eight points and six steals.

Toomey had four blocks.

Martin, Delfino, Tallo and Toomey opened up the scoring with a 12-2 burst, including two 3-pointers by Martin. The Lady Bucks never looked back.

Dunmore Lady Bucks advance to state semifinal before loss to Neumann-Goretti


The 2015-2016 Lady Bucks Basketball Team. Photo Credit: Rich Banick Photography

By Steve Svetovich

It was another basketball season to remember.

A season ending loss, but a lot to be proud of.

The Dunmore Lady Bucks advanced all the way to the PIAA Class AA semifinal losing to Neumann-Goretti, 52-26, Tuesday, March 15, at Bethlehem Freedom High School.

It was the third straight season Neumann-Goretti eliminated the Lady Bucks in the playoffs.

Dunmore finished the season 27-3, a magnificent showing under veteran coach Ben O’Brien.

The Lady Bucks won the Lackawanna League Division III title in a season that featured a 20-game winning streak.

Dunmore lost to Neumann-Goretti, 64-61, in the quarterfinals last season. The Lady Bucks lost, 55-30, to Neumann-Goretti in the semifinals in 2014.

In the state semifinal this year, Syracuse-commit Alisha Kebbe led Neumann-Goretti with 16 points. Morgan Lenahan scored 13 and Chyna Nixon added 12.

Dunmore had only nine field goals on 28 attempts against a tight Neumann-Goretti defense. Dunmore senior Izzy Cooper hit on four of her eight shots from the paint to lead the Lady Bucks with eight points.

The Lady Bucks did not score in the fourth quarter. Neumann-Goretti scored 14 in the final quarter to close the win.

Megan Hartshorn

Dunmore senior Megan Hartshorn, April 2016 Athlete of the Month. Photo Credit: Rich Banick Photography

The Lady Bucks came close in the third quarter when senior Megan Hartshorn, Maddie Martin and Erika Bistran each hit 3-pointers. Dunmore was able to close the gap to 33-24 after Bistran hit her 3-pointer.

Emily Sheehan scored on a hoop with 30 seconds left in the third quarter as Dunmore was down, 38-26.

However, Dunmore did not score again.

The Lady Bucks defeated Imhotep Charter, 45-44, in the PIAA Class AA quarterfinal game, Friday, March 11, at Bethlehem Freedom High School.

Dunmore star junior guard Maddie Martin led the team with 13 points in the contest. She scored Dunmore’s first points of the game to go up, 3-2.

Bistran scored nine, Hartshorn eight, Sheehan seven and Cooper six to aide a balanced Dunmore scoring attack.

The clutch Martin hit a third-quarter lay-in to put the Lady Bucks up, 22-21.

Bistran and Hartshorn hit on back-to-back 3-pointers in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter.

A Hartshorn hoop and two Martin free throws put Dunmore up by five late in the contest.

The Lady Bucks, led by Martin’s superb ball handling, held onto the ball in the final minutes before Sheehan hit on two free throws and Martin on one to give Dunmore a 45-41 lead.

Imhotep’s Shadera Jenkins hit on a 3-pointer with a half second left, but Dunmore sealed the win, 45-44.

Bistran hit on three 3-pointers in the win. Cooper hauled down seven important rebounds.

Beginning a stretch in 2005-06 that includes six straight District 2 Class AA titles and nine total, the Lady Bucks have been in the state playoffs in each of the past 11 years. In that time, Dunmore has a record of 276-47, including 20-11 in the state playoffs.

Dunmore finished 25-4 under coach O’Brien last season. The Lady Bucks graduate six seniors this year.

Lady Bucks clinch first half behind spark of Maddie Martin

Photo Credit: Rich Banick/Rich Banick Photography

By Steve Svetovich

Maddie Martin put on a show in the second quarter of the Dunmore Lady Bucks 63-38 win over Riverside Wednesday, Jan. 20, to help her team clinch the first half title in the Lackawanna League Division III girls basketball.

The win stretched the Dunmore Lady Bucks record to 15-0 at press time.

Martin, a junior guard, scored all 16 of her points, hauled down four rebounds, had three steals and three of her nine assists during an eight-minute stretch that helped Dunmore to the division first half title.

The spark provided by the scrappy guard helped Dunmore to a 24-2 run and commanding 42-13 lead.

Martin’s magnificent second quarter began when she assisted Erika Bistran for a 3-pointer.

Megan Hartshorn’s steal led to Bistran setting up Martin for a score.

Another key play came when Martin went through the defense for a three-point play to give the Lady Bucks a 26–11 lead.

After a Riverside bucket, Martin then scored on a drive. She then buried a 20-foot. shot, hit on a 3-pointer from the wing and fired an assist to Emily Sheehan for a 3-pointer..

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Photo Credit: Rich Banick/Rich Banick Photography

Martin later hit on a three-pointer off a Hartshorn nice pass. She found Sheehan along the baseline for a strong 42-13 halftime lead.

Sheehan finished with 11 points in the win. Izzy Cooper scored 10 points. Bistran added nine points.

Jess Millan led Riverside with 12 points. Bistran led the Lady Bucks with seven rebounds. Sheehan had four steals.

Martin is third in Lackawanna League Division III scoring with an average of 15.7 points per game at press time. She is third in 3-point shooting averaging 2.5 per game.

Bistran is fifth in the league in free throw percentage hitting on 80 percent at press time. Martin is tied for 10th with a .667 percentage.

Bistran and Hartshorn are tied for fourth in 3-point shooting both averaging 1.5 per game at press time.

The Lady Bucks are coached by the veteran Ben O’Brien.

Riverside dropped to 11-4 overall with the loss.The Lady Vikings dropped to 4-2 in league play.