Bishop Brady girls’ basketball team headed to final four
Last night, the Bishop Brady girls’ basketball team was rebounding in every sense of the word. The second-ranked Green Giants (18-2) controlled the boards and they also rebounded from an early first-quarter deficit and never looked back, defeating seventh-seeded Somersworth, 44-39, in last night’s Division III quarterfinal matchup to book a spot in the final four for the second straight year.
“It was kind of our mantra going into the game,” Bishop Brady Coach Aaron Brochu said of the importance of collecting rebounds. “We did a pretty good job with that.”
When the teams squared off in January, it was a close contest from the opening tip and last night proved to be no different, with the Hilltoppers (14-6) taking their only lead of the night early before the Green Giants escaped the first quarter with a narrow 10-9 lead.
The game opened up a little in the second quarter thanks to a well-balanced rebounding effort from guards Sarah Thomas (16 points, seven rebounds) and Riselly Deoleo (14 points, six rebounds, seven steals) and forward Melissa Mallahan (eight points, six rebounds). Their efforts led to a 21-14 halftime advantage that turned into a 15-point lead for a short time in the third quarter before the Green Giants headed into the final quarter with 35-23 lead.
“We executed on offense really well. We were patient and waited for the right shot,” Brochu said.
The Hilltoppers closed the gap in the fourth quarter, pulling within three points with three minutes to go, but they couldn’t cut the lead any further, despite the Green Giants missing some free throws down the stretch.
The final score was reminiscent of the scoreline of the last meeting between the teams, when Bishop Brady won, 43-36.
“Somersworth is very well coached and a team that will never give up,” Brochu said of his opponents’ fourth-quarter comeback. “They play buzzer to buzzer.”
Now Brady turns its attention to Tuesday night’s semifinal, where the Green Giants take on No. 3 Campbell. The Cougars dominated the first game, winning 57-39 early in February, while Brady narrowly won the second meeting, 46-45.
“We have to take care of the ball, our turnover ratios are too high at this point,” Brochu said. “It certainly was a problem in the first meeting. It was a little better in the second meeting.”
Brady takes on Campbell in the first semifinal Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. at SNHU. No. 4 Fall Mountain (18-2) and No. 1 Newfound (19-1) tip off at 7 p.m.
No. 4 Fall Mountain 61, No. 5 Hopkinton 43
The Hawks (15-5) struggled offensively against a tall Fall Mountain team (18-2), resulting in a season-ending loss in a quarterfinal game on the road.
Fall Mountain led 20-10 after the first quarter, but Hopkinton closed the deficit to 30-24 at halftime. The Wildcats outscored the Hawks 31-19 in the second half to seal the win.
“We shot real poorly, we couldn’t get the ball inside to get any shots off,” Hopkinton Coach Dave Hughes said.
Senior point guard Sabrey Montore (13 points) and senior forward Brittany Marshall (12 points) played well in their final game. Maddie Clark (eight points) and Sloane White (six points) also played well.
No. 1 Newfound 66, No. 9 Franklin 37
The Golden Tornadoes (11-9) saw their season come to an end at the hands of top-ranked Newfound (19-1), which moves on to Tuesday’s semifinals at SNHU, where it will take on No. 4 Fall Mountain. No details were reported.