Greenwich High School’s girls basketball team is certainly heading into its upcoming five-game road trip on a winning note.
The soaring Cardinals’ latest victory came Thursday night against Glastonbury and somewhat like Tuesday’s triumph against Darien, they had to make key shots in the fourth quarter and grind it out.
Senior guard Kristin Riggs scored a game-high 14 points, junior guard Carolyn Frankle scored all eight of her points in the second half and senior forward Kayla Anderson added seven points for the Cardinals (8-5), who extended their winning streak to five games with a 48-44 non-conference victory.
Greenwich was scheduled to visit Ridgefield tonight at 7 for a key FCIAC matchup, but Greenwich Public Schools are closed today due to inclement weather. The Cardinals’ next five matchups, all road games are against Ridgefield, University, Bridgeport Central, Danbury and Capital Prep.
Glastonbury got 11 points from senior forward Sydney Kehl and 10 points from freshman guard Madison Handrahan.
“This was a nail-biter,” Greenwich coach Rashamel Jones said. “We had a seven-point lead at 47-40 and we were still rushing. This is where we have to grow as we start to go into the FCIACs and states, when we have a lead, let’s not rush, let’s take our time and get our shot. Once we get teams down, we have to keep teams down and don’t bail them out by throwing up quick shots or trying to make a cross court pass. It’s the small things with us.”
The Cards trailed 11-10 following the first quarter and entered halftime with a 22-17 lead.
“I’m excited, but you don’t want to get ahead of yourself,” Riggs said of the Cardinals’ current win streak. “Chemistry is what got us this win. We had players like Lauren Resnick step up for us off the bench and we played well offensively and on defense.”
A layup by Handrahan brought Glastonbury to within 22-19 the first minute of the third quarter. Senior guard Gillian Frey, who scored five points, swished a 3-pointer from the right side, upping Greenwich’s advantage to 26-20 with just over five minutes remaining in the third quarter. Frankle then converted a 3-pointer from the left wing, putting the home team on top, 29-20 at the 4:40 mark. Junior forward Zaniya Huggins’ layup gave Greenwich a 31-25 edge going into the final quarter.
Handrahan’s basket evened the score at 31-31, but Frankle made a mid-range jumper, putting the Cards ahead for good at 33-31 early in the fourth quarter. Riggs connected on a 3-pointer, Jablonski grabbed an offensive rebound and scored and Frankle nailed a shot from beyond the arc, making it 41-33 midway through the fourth quarter.
Anderson, Riggs and junior guard Sophia Sergio each made clutch shots down the stretch, as Glastonbury remained well within striking distance. The visitors cut Greenwich’s lead to 47-44 with 8.9 seconds remaining on junior Gisel Astiasaran’s layup off a steal.
“They were a great team,” Jones said of Glastonbury. “When you play hard for 32 minutes, you are going to be in every game. They would not go away and those are the type of teams that are dangerous.”
Frey had five points off the bench, Jablonski, who started, finished with four points, junior forward Zaniya Huggins had two points off the bench and sophomore guard Lauren Resnick came off the bench and hit a big 3-pointer in the win.
“They’re ready, that’s been our theme all year,” Jones said of his players coming off the bench. “When your time comes, be ready. We’re jelling now, our bigs are coming along with the guards. Teams can’t concentrate on our perimeter play to shut us down, because our bigs are coming along too.”
Jablonski grabbed eight rebounds, Anderson had seven rebounds, senior forward Kelly Martyanov pulled down four rebounds and blocked a shot, Riggs had four rebounds and Sergio added three rebounds for the Cardinals.
“We have three wins this week, which is a great feeling,” Jablonski said. “We are starting to play together as a team so well and we’re looking forward to our upcoming games.”
Said Anderson: “Our team always talks about playing together and playing for each other and the second half when the game was close, we stuck together, played with a lot of energy and pulled out the win.”