NEW BUFFALO — The New Buffalo High School girls basketball team out-scored Cassopolis 15-3 in the third quarter on Thursday, Jan. 3 en route to a 41-32 victory.

“The third quarter for us, that was huge,” said New Buffalo coach Curtis Brewster.

The Bison led by a single point (10-9) after one quarter of play as Abby Vitale, Mary Mayer, Nadia Collins and Olivia Haskins had field goals to help offset five early points from Angel Gary of the Rangers.

Cassopolis opened the second period by going on a 10-2 run to build a 19-12 advantage (Gary tallied the first two points and Sophia Fiala knocked down two shots to help her team reach 19 points.

New Buffalo battled back by scoring the next eight points to carry a 20-19 advantage into half-time. Vitale got things rolling by sinking a jumper, Mayer grabbed a rebound and scored, Haskins knocked down a long shot, and Kaitlyn Biela was on the mark with a jumper.

“They’re a physical team … we kind of got punched in the mouth a little bit, and we had to come back,” Brewster said.

The decisive third-stanza surge was powered by two straight buckets from Vitale, a Mayer three-pointer, a fast-break lay-up by Vitale, and Mayer’s score with the assist pass from Hope Motycka.

Junior Clair Workman said the Bison “just had to talk it out since we’ve had such a long time off.”

The Bison maintained the lead down the stretch as Vitale, Mayer and Haskins provided crucial points.

Vitale said the Bison played aggressively and gave its all.

“I think we were really pumped … We wanted to win this year because last year the beat us,” she said.

Mayer finished with a game-high 17 points, Vitale scored 14 points, and Haskins added 8.

Gary paced the Rangers with 14 points.

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