NEWINGTON - The Newington girls basketball team knew Thursday nightâ€™s game against Platt was going to a closely contested matchup.
The Indians were not far off.
Spurred on by a 15-4 third-quarter run and holding off a late Panthersâ€™ charge, Newington came out with the 60-51 win and is just two victories away from clinching a postseason berth.
â€śWe knew it was going to be scrappy,â€ť Indians head coach Richard Bangs said. â€śPlatt plays tough, they play hard, 32 straight minutes they just kept coming at us. We committed early and at halftime, we decided not to chase them so much. We really turned the game around when we got more disciplined on defense.â€ť
Newington also showed up on the offensive end of the floor.
Olivia St. Remy and Abby Flores hit back-to-back baskets to start the Indiansâ€™ 8-2 run during the first three minutes of the quarter. Maya Gajowiac then stole the ball and handed it off to Ashanti Frazier for a layup, adding two.
It wasnâ€™t until 5:13 left in the quarter that Plattâ€™s Martha Chapman was finally able to put some points on the board.
Gajowiac would start another run by the Newington, this one a 12-2 run by sinking a pair of free throws. Platt answered back with a basket for two from Chapman, but that would be the last basket it scored in the quarter. Frazier continued the run for the Indians with a basket for two while Sabrina Soler and St. Remy both his back-to-back baskets.
â€śWe started off with a lot of intensity,â€ť Gajowiac said. â€śOnce we got into the game we just kept sharing the ball. Everyone had a lot of points today, it wasnâ€™t just one player, so we did really well.â€ť
It was a collective team win for Newington, Frazier scored a game-high 17 points but teammate St. Remy was not far behind, as she score 16 points of her own.
Gajowiac also put up nine points while Flores added seven.
The game was even more contested in the beginning, starting with the first quarter.
Platt came right out of the gates with a 4-0 run to begin the game, but Gajowiac answered back with a 3-point goal. The Indians were able to take a one-point advantage when Ali Houldcroft was sent to the foul line, hitting both of her shots.
With just under five minutes left in the first, the Indians make back-to-back baskets by Frazier and St. Remy. Frazier added a 3-point goal at the 3:27 mark, but not before Platt would have a 4-1 run.
At the end of the first quarter, Newington led just 16-15.
The second quarter was just like the first, a back-and-forth battle for points. But in the end, the Indians outscored the Panthers 11-10.
Newington started the quarter with an 7-2 run. Flores started the run with a single free throw. Chapman sank a basket for the Panthers but not before the Indians could finish their run. Flores sank back-to-back baskets right before St. Remy hit a jumper.
Platt sparked an 8-4 run of its own as the quarter came to a close.
â€śI think at halftime we started to get worried because they caught up a little bit,â€ť Gajowiac said. Â Â Â â€śWe started off with a big lead and by the end of the second quarter they were caught up to us. So we knew we had to jump and we knew we couldnâ€™t let them win so we just had to get in there.â€ť
Platt continued to score throughout the fourth quarter as it scored 22 points while Newington scored 15.
â€śWe started off on a three-loss streak, so we really wanted to get into it,â€ť Gajowiac said.
Shelby Iava can be reached at (860) 801-5096 or firstname.lastname@example.org