Old Orchard Beach 51
The Hyde women hosted Old Orchard Beach on Thursday night in their first contest since returning from winter break. Coming off of two intense practices to prepare for more conference action, the Phoenix were ready to go and started the game off strong, going up by 9 points and ending the first quarter with an 11-2 lead on their opponent. In the second quarter Old Orchard upped the ante, installing a high-pressure full-court press with which the Hyde women struggled immensely, turning the ball over eight times in eight minutes of play and giving the other team the momentum they needed to start converting on their layups and second-chance attempts at the hoop. Senior Sage Harris exploded in the third quarter, scoring 12 of her 20 points, but it was not enough to recover the deficit. Junior Dexie Cercos was second in scoring with 9 points. Katie Comeaux and senior Lily Smith led the team in rebounding, with 8 and 9 rebounds, respectively. Smith also converted on one of two free-throw attempts in the first quarter. The triple-threat of a sick day for junior captain Laughlynn Bragg, foul trouble for senior Jenna Keith and Comeaux, and a third-quarter injury for Harris, led to contributions from players off the bench such as Elsa Véron with three points, and Amy Ginsberg with two fourth-quarter rebounds. Senior Aneth Batamuliza clocked some serious minutes in this game and is emerging as a strong post presence on the floor. The Hyde Lady Phoenix refocused in practice on Friday, dedicating their time to handling full-court pressure as a team, and raised their confidence going into Saturday’s game. They will travel to Valley with the Men’s MPA team to take on a team that they beat in two games last year, both of which came down to the final seconds of play. The focuses for this varsity squad are execution and communication on the floor, as well as handling pressure as a team; they will certainly have a big opportunity to prove themselves in both areas on Saturday.
The Hyde Phoenix fell to Valley in Bingham, Maine on Saturday afternoon on a road trip shared with the Men’s Varsity team. The Phoenix struggled getting into an offensive momentum, and their defensive intensity suffered because of it. Senior captain Sage Harris was responsible for 15 of the team’s 20 points, adding 6 rebounds, 2 assists and 4 steals to the effort. In the first quarter, junior captain Laughlynn Bragg contributed a bucket and junior Dexie Cercos added a shot and a free throw. Bragg’s main contribution came under the hoop, with 12 rebounds; sophomore Kathryn Comeaux added 8 of her own. Freshman Elea Sevrain saw unprecedented minutes for the Phoenix in this game, and worked hard for all of them, chalking up three rebounds. Though the Phoenix held Valley to just 12 points in the second half, the damage was doneThe Hyde women have two practices to prepare for a re-match against Hebron Academy, who they ousted with a buzzer beater in the championship game of the Alleigh Mills Tournament in early December.
Athlete of the week: Sage Harris, averaging 16 points per game, is this week’s Athlete of the Week, with 20 points against Old Orchard Beach on Thursday and 15 versus Valley. Harris leads the team with her work ethic. She has been an active learner as a team leader, seeking out the guidance of her coach and peers, and is growing into her captainship.
Goals: The primary goal for this week will be skill development. The Lady Phoenix are a team of athletic players whose struggles lie in their execution of fundamentals and basketball IQ. To find rhythm and confidence offensively, the Phoenix’s goal is to form themselves as a defensive unit, stressing cohesion, communication and intensity on the defensive end of the floor.