Thomaston Girls Hustle Past Wamogo
Thomaston Girls Hustle Past Wamogo
LITCHFIELD – Nobody is claiming this season’s version of Thomaston is that same as the Berkshire League championship version of a year ago. But the 2010-11 Bears do have two things in common with their predecessors.
No. 1 and most importantly, is they win. No. 2 is style. You won’t find the prettiest jump shot in the arsenal and smooth isn’t exactly the thought that hits you watching the Bears. There is youth here with one senior and at times a helter-skelter feel to the game.
But, these Bears will claw, scrap, dive, harass and floor-burn opponents into demoralization. Wamogo got their second taste of it all this season Saturday afternoon and struggled to mount a challenge to the Bears.
The first time around it was a two-point game between the two teams. This time around it was all Thomaston’s game to the tune of a 45-34 victory. The Bears are now 10-1, good enough to at least keep Lewis Mills (10-0) taking a peek into the rear view mirror once in a while despite its clear cut superiority over the rest of the BL.
The Bears outrebounded the taller Warriors, found a majority of the loose balls and just outenergized coach Kevin Crowley’s team on this day.
“They outhustled us and outscrapped us especially in the first quarter,” said Crowley. ‘We were a half step short and a half step slow.”
The Bears gift of grit is not a learned phenomenon. It is an established personality trait.
“(Coach Bob McMahon) doesn’t have to teach us, we know how hard we have to work,” said feisty sophomore Maggie Eberhardt who led all scorers with 19 points.”
“It’s about always working hard,” added the Bears main defensive pest senior Hannah Martin.
The Bears made life miserable for the Warriors right from the start. They doubled down on 6-foot-2 center Caycee Williams holding her to just three baskets and nine points for the game. Williams had 12 rebounds and six blocked shots but was never able to assert herself at the offensive end.
“They doubled her nicely and we didn’t move the ball side to side against their pressure,” assessed Crowley.
“It was the perfect storm against (Williams),” said McMahon. “Kellie (Burns) made it hard for her to catch the ball and guards made it hard to get passes into her.”
The Warriors also found a lot of Thomaston hands in their pockets and turned the ball over six times in the quarter.
Meanhile, Thomaston’s offense is maturing to a more balanced nature, adding meaning to its defense. It starts with Eberhardt but it doesn’t end there. Burns offered a nice low post move against Williams to get the Bears rolling and then the mercurial Eberhardt got rolling.
Eberhardt drilled a 10 footer in the lane, got loose for a fastbreak layup, drilled a three-pointer and then completed her run of nine unanswered points with a pair of free throws to give the Bears an 11-2 lead. They would never look back.
Thomaston threw a few others into the offensive mix in the second quarter with freshman Abby Hurlbert scoring a quick five points, drilling a three-pointer in the process, and Laura Miller (9 points) canning one from long range to go with another Eberhardt hoop that put the lead at 25-11.
Wamogo’s best and only run followed before the game slipped away. Kerri Stolle (12 points) nailed a three-pointer and Williams finally got loose down low for a hoop that highlighted a string of 10 straight points to cut the deficit to 25-21.
The momentum was short lived however. Leading, 27-21, at the break, Thomaston scored the first four points of the third quarter and went on a 9-2 run to reestablish control, 36-23. Again Eberhardt figured prominently in the surge with a three-pointer and seven points.
“We get a little from everybody and sometimes a lot from Maggie, that’ll work,” said McMahon.
The Warriors never got back into it. Thomaston took control of the boards with Burns grabbing eight and Hurlbert and Martin six apiece and found enough offense to never allow the Warriors closer than nine points, 36-27, the rest of the way.”
The loss dropped Wamogo to 7-5 on the season and once again left Crowley searching for answers.
“(For us) it depends on who shows up and we’re not showing up for tough games,” said Crowley. “ Lack of experienced players is hurting us.”
As for Thomaston, it just keeps on scraping. And winning.
Thomaston 45, Wamogo 34
Thomaston (10-1): Laura Miller 3 2 9, Maggie Eberhardt 7 3 19, Kellie Burns 1 0 2, Mimi Carr 0 0 0, Sydney Keith 1 0 3, Hannah Martin 2 0 5, Abby Hurlbert 2 0 5, Sarah Hafele 0 0 0, Hannah Russo 0 2 2, Totals 16 7 45.
Wamogo (7-5): Jillian Nichols 0 0 0, Jessica Binkowski 1 0 2, Jenna Lopardo 0 0 0, Hannah LaBonne 1 0 2, Arianna Shemms 1 0 2, Caycee Williams 3 3 9, Kerri Stolle 4 3 12, Megan Layman 2 3 7 Totals 12 9 34
3-point goals: W – Stolle 1; T – Eberhardt 2, Miller 1, Keith 1, Martin 1, Hurlbert 1.