WEEDSPORT — Brooke Hammersley hit two three-pointers to kick off the second half, but was just getting started.
The junior scored 15 points in the third quarter alone, as Weedsport outscored Marcellus 22-5 in the frame. The surge gave the Warriors a commanding 30-point lead heading into the fourth quarter and the Weedsport girls basketball team cruised to a 68-37 victory over Marcellus at Weedsport High School Tuesday.
"At halftime, we talked about how we were having really good success getting the ball inside ... but then Brooke came out and drilled two 3s right in a row," Warriors coach Chris Vargason said with a smile. "I said to (JV coach Patrick Piascik) 'What do I know?'
"She had a great night and we got the ball inside. It was a good team effort."
Hammersley finished with a career-high 32 points, including 12 field goals and three buckets from beyond the arc.
"When they played the 2-3, it made it easy for (teammate Cassi Carroll) to get inside," Hammersley said. "When they switched to man-to-man against us, it made it easy for me to be one-on-one against them."
For Vargason, Hammersley has made strides since last season and her work is starting to pay off.
"She has done a lot of work in the offseason to be stronger," Vargason said. "Last year there were a couple of times where the strength just wasn't there. This year she's a year older and a little stronger, and she's finishing now.
"She's a handful for other teams. I'm glad she's on our team."
Freshman Suzie Nemec recorded 13 points, while Carroll added eight points for the Warriors. Ashley Wightman had six points, and Sydney Gilfus finished with four points.
Weedsport jumped out to a 14-8 lead and finished the first quarter on a seven-point run for a 21-8 advantage through the first eight minutes. Both teams had runs and scored 13 points in the second quarter, as the Warriors led 34-21 at halftime.
The big third quarter gave Weedsport distance on the scoreboard, and the Warriors outscored the Mustangs 12-11 in the final frame to seal the win.
"Our coach conditions us so much, and always says we're going to play 'run, run, run,'" Hammersley said. "Definitely being in shape helped a lot too, because we weren't tired and they were."
Weedsport frequently switched up its defensive schemes, which frustrated Marcellus early and often.
"We mixed it up a little bit," Vargason said. "We started off with a little man-to-man, and then we played a little bit of zone extended and at one point we went to 1-3-1 and back to man. We just want to play uptempo. We want to play fast. That's our goal this year. We have kids that can finish on the offensive end and get back and play good defense."
While he'd like his team to improve their rebounding, Vargason likes what he has seen from his team early in the season.
"Other than that, I like the way we're running the offense," Vargason said. "We're getting up and down the floor, we're hustling and working hard."
Weedsport (2-1) has a week to rest and prepare before playing Pulaski on Dec. 5. The Warriors had two scrimmages and a pair of tournament games last week, so Vargason is embracing the opportunity to hold a few practices before his team's next game.
"We've only practiced one day in a week," Vargason said. "We've been having scrimmages or games. I'll be happy to have a few practices."