Law girls basketball picks up first win of season
MILFORD >> After starting the season with five straight losses, Law girls basketball coach Dan Young was looking to crack into the win column. Despite several close contests, the Lady Lawmen were not able to close the deal in four of those games.
Despite a tense fourth quarter, Young and his Lady Lawmen hung on to defeat Branford 37-32 Wednesday afternoon in the day’s opening contest of the Milford Holiday Tournament at Foran High.
“I feel like we have been there all year,” Young said. “We have given up a few leads in the fourth quarter of just about every game. We have been on the edge of one, so it feels good to finally get it.”
Leading by 11 points entering the fourth quarter, Law (1-5) watched as the Hornets used consecutive 3-pointers by senior Adrienne DiGioia and freshman Karly King to get within 33-30 with half of the final quarter still to play. Law, which was 7-of-15 from the free throw line in the game, could not pull away, missing a pair of free throws in the final minute.
DiGioia hit a bucket with 23 seconds to go to get the Hornets within 35-32, but Law’s Fallon Andriolas put the game away with a pair of free throws with five seconds to go.
“We are a young team,” Young said. “We are gaining some experience in these first few games. It was big at the end. We just said it was time for us to make our free throws. We were able to keep the ball away from them and hit our free throws when we needed to.”
Branford (2-3), which has struggled coinciding with the loss of junior Emma Pierson to an arm injury three games ago, trailed by 10 in the first quarter. The Hornets managed only a basket by DiGioia and a 3-pointer by King from outside the free thow line.
“It is frustrating only because we did not execute,” Branford coach Justin Henry said. “We were in the right spots, but just did not execute. We got a good effort from Adrienne (DiGioia) today. But, we just didn’t do the little things you need to win.”
A pair of buckets by Andriolas extended Law’s lead to 19-9 in the second quarter, before baskets by Branford’s King and Gabriella Piscitelli had the Hornets within six.
“We talked about having urgency,” Young said. “We were able to hit some key baskets and free throws.”
“Our offense can play a lot better than it did,” Henry said. “We were in position at the end. We just did not execute. We went over things in our timeouts, but instead of getting the ball, we turned the ball over.”
The Hornets, who have lost three in a row, got as close as 24-20 in the third quarter on a bucket by DiGioia. But a basket and free throw by Cali Jolley extended Law’s margin to 27-20 and buckets by Samara Thacker and Andriolas extended the lead to 31-20.
DiGioia led all scorers with 13 points in the loss for Branford, while King scored 10 and freshman Brianna Shaw added six. Law was led by Andriolas and Colleen Goodwin with 10 points apiece.