Published February 11, 2021
By DAN NUNN
NORTH READING — On Thursday, the NRHS girls’ basketball team had a season low seven turnovers and surpassed the 50 point mark for the first time this year enroute to a gargantuan 53-17 victory over Rockport.
Brianne Slattery was outstanding with a career high 22 points, including five 3-pointers, in just 17 minutes. Sophomore Halee Torra turned in her best varsity performance with seven points, four rebounds and two steals.
NRHS dominated the glass with a 53-36 rebounding advantage. Sarah Gerber (14), Riley Garrity (five), Bella Cannalonga (five), and Alyssa Demetri (five), all had strong rebounding games. The entire roster provided a solid effort throughout as all 11 players saw action in both halves.
The Hornets erased a five point deficit in the last three minutes to squeak out a 41-40 nail biter at Triton on Friday. Faith Newton scored a team high 13 points. Brianne Slattery (five points, seven rebounds, two assists), Rose Morelli (eight points, eight rebounds, three assists), Sarah Gerber (five points, 19 rebounds) and Kayla Imbriano (five points, nine rebounds) provided solid contributions as well.
Once again it was a strong defensive effort and significant rebounding advantage that keyed the victory.
“We are in the learning process of reducing costly turnovers and converting more of our scoring opportunities,” said head coach Bob Romeo. “But our never give up mentality and relentless effort allows us to always have a chance. This has been a very encouraging stretch for our team.”
It was a back and forth affair throughout. With 3:11 left, Triton hit a deep 3-pointer to extend its lead to 40-35 but that would prove to be the last points of the night for the Vikings as NRHS put the clamps on defensively and found a way to score the final six points.
The last six points came on a Newton jumper with under two minutes left, a Slattery layup with just under one left and a Newton offensive rebound put back with eight seconds left. The Hornets forced a turnover on the last Triton possession to seal the win.
North Reading hosted Newburyport on Wednesday after press time. Their regular season finale is on Sunday, 1 p.m. against Pentucket at NRHS.