Short-handed Lady Lawmen fall to Tigers

For two and a half quarters last Friday night, the Jonathan Law girls basketball team’s game plan with Southern Connecticut Conference Oronoque Division rival Daniel Hand was working.

The Lady Lawmen were looking to keep the game score somewhere in the upper 30s or low 40s. They wanted to play tenacious defense and needed to control play in its offensive end.

When Pam Ellison scored on a breakaway, Law held a 28-20 lead. The advantage evaporated like a snowball on a 70-degree day, however, as the defending Class L champion Tigers rallied.

Hand's center Halle Freund, who proved to be a defensive menace for Law all game long, sandwiched a pair of baskets around All-Stater Gabby Egidio's 3-pointer and the Tigers were within 30-29 at quarter's end.

Egidio scored again to begin the final period. A 15-6 run from there on out created a 46-36 road win and brought their record to 8-2.

For Law, it was the culmination of a three-loss week, with other defeats coming against Hamden and Hillhouse. The slide came after the team had won its first eight games.

After a post-game meeting with his squad, coach Dan Young had time to reflect.

"Hand is a fantastic team," he said. "And we knew that in a game like this, one where you're looking to keep the score in the 30s, every possession is important. Every turnover means a little bit more than in a high-scoring game.

"We missed a few too many shots (including layups) during their run and they made big shots. That's what really good teams like theirs can do."

Staying with its defensive plan, a very good 2-3 zone, Law harried the Tigers throughout the first and second quarters, causing 14 turnovers alone in the first 16 minutes. A 6-0 run over the final minutes of the second quarter allowed the Lady Lawmen to take a 19-15 lead into the locker room.

"We usually score 15 points in the first six minutes of a game," said Hand coach Tim Treadwell. "They came after us tonight and we're not always used to that. But they're a hungry team. They struggled last year and won only five games. Then they go out and win their first eight games to start off this season. They have every reason to be confident."

Law was forced to play without one of its starting guards, Cali Jolley, who was out injured.

"Overall, we're pretty healthy, but without Cali tonight, we were hurting without her point production,” Young said of Jolley, who had strung together games where she scored 22, 27 and 16 points

Law was led by Ellison with 13 points.

Fallon Andriolas added 11 and also had 11 rebounds.

Egidio led Hand with 23 points and Sara Wohlgemuth had 15.

Law finished the night making 15 of 58 shots from the field (25 percent) while Hand was 18-for-48 (37 percent). Law had the edge in rebounding, 47-32, and turned the ball over 14 times.

Law will play Lyman Hall, before it visits North Haven tonight at 7.

Roundup: Jonathan Law  lost to visiting Hamden High, 73-41, on Jan. 10. Cali Jolley scored 14 points and Fallon Andriolas had 10. Haniyan Thompson had 24 points for Hamden (5-3).