The tenor of Tuesday night’s Skyland Conference crossover game between the best two small schools in the league changed twice in the span of about 20 minutes of real time.
Neither team could find the basket in the early going, and it looked like 6th-ranked Bound Brook and No. 8 Mount St. Mary would be headed for a 15-10 halftime score, or something of that ilk.
After things settled in, the teams traded buckets with increasing frequency, and swapped the lead nine times by the first few minutes of the second stanza.
But once the Lions jumped ahead that last time, they never looked back, extending a seven-point halftime lead to as much as 15 in the third quarter, and 17 in the final period, to come away with a 61-50 win over the Crusaders.
Eventually, Mount found its touch from beyond the arc, burying eleven treys in the game, five of them from sophomore Rachel Castela, who set a new mark for buckets from downtown in a single season of 55, thanks to her quintet of treys in the game, four of which came in the second half, three in the third quarter alone.
Mount improved to 13-7 on the season, while Bound Brook dropped to 15-6. That’s the most losses for the Crusaders in a season since 2016 – which wasn’t a bad one by any stretch; they went to the Central Jersey Group 1 final and lost to University of Newark.
It was also the Lions’ second straight win in the series after Bound Brook had won the previous eight.
Click below for postgame reaction: