Girls basketball: Jonathan Law

Erin Saley scored 22 points to lead the Jonathan Law girls basketball team a 56-52 SCC Hammonasset Division victory over Guilford High at the James Richetelli Sr. Gymnasium on Jan. 9.

Izzy Nerney’s 3-pointer gave Guilford a 52-51 edge with 1:46 left in overtime, but Saley responded by sinking a brace of foul shots with 90 seconds to put the Eagles ahead for good.

Paige Szygiel and Jessica Centore knocked down free throws down the stretch to seal the victory for Law (6-2), which snapped a two-game losing streak.

After opening up the year with five straight wins, the Eagles dropped back-to-back SCC contests to Lauralton Hall, 40-37, and Daniel Hand of Madison, 81-67, prior to tangling with Guilford.

“Last year, our season was a season of streaks,” Law head coach Dan Young said. “Unfortunately, a lot of them were long losing streaks. This is the same crew. A couple of tough games after a quick start, this was a big division win for us. We needed it.”

Centore added 19 points and Laura Dulin 13, as Dulin, Centore and Saley combined for 54 of Law’s 56 points.

“We have a short rotation, we had a couple of girls get hurt,” Young said. “For them to go 37 minutes, it’s a real testament to their will to win this game. We want to stay undefeated at home as long as we can.”

The Eagles made just two field goals in the fourth quarter and overtime, but connected on 15-of-26 from the foul line to turn aside the Indians (6-2).

Saley forced overtime by hitting two free throws with 5.6 seconds left in regulation.

Heading into the fourth quarter, the Indians (6-2) were clinging to a 38-36 advantage. A putback by freshman forward Amanda King doubled the Guilford lead, before Andrea Basilicato answered a Dulin foul shot with a scoop layup.

That increased the Indian lead to 42-37, its largest of the game, with under seven minutes left to play.

Law kept battling, with a runner from Dulin accounting for its only basket of the frame. The junior guard’s tough hoop in traffic narrowed the Eagle gap to 42-41.

Caroline Miller countered with a layup for Guilford on the other end with 3:57 left, but the Indians converted just one more basket for the rest of regulation.

By making 8-of-12 from the charity stripe, including the two clutch makes from Saley, the Eagles were able to force overtime. Being in the bonus for nearly the entire quarter, Law kept attacking the rim and drawing fouls.

“Guilford plays a really good, in-your-face, man-to-man (defense),” Young said. “The way you beat that is pressure with pressure. You have to get low and attack it. We made some, we missed some, but we made enough.”

In the extra session, Centore canned a jumper at the 2:37 mark to stake Law to a 51-49 margin.

Nerney’s 3-pointer put Guilford back in control briefly, until Saley, Szygiel and Centore combined to hit 5-of-6 from the foul line to secure the win and halt Law’s two-game losing streak.

“We made some. We missed some,” Young said. “But, we made enough to win.”

Law travels to Edna Fraser Gymnasium on Friday to take on Foran High (0-8) at 7 p.m.