The girls varsity basketball team has started off the season with an incredible record of 3-0, and even though half the team is new, they’re winning like they’ve been playing together for years.
The team boasts a 3-0 record after victories against Kingswood-Oxford, St. Mark’s, and Suffield. The varsity team consists of six new players: Cristina Negron ’22, Selena Negron ’22, Abbie Coscia ’19, Carrie St. Marie ’21, Adamma Eze ’21, and Shayla Heekin ’19. They take their undefeated record into this week’s games against Choate Rosemary Hall and The Brown Holiday Tournament.
The team is coached by Katy Briedis and Matthew Porter, who are both new to coaching girls varsity at Williston. This year’s captain is Sarah Sullivan ’19. The basketball team is part of the NEPSAC Class B division.
The team narrowly beat St. Mark’s on Wednesday (Dec. 5) by one point. Sarah Sullivan made a layup with 15 seconds on the clock, putting Williston up by one. Miraculously, two shooters from St. Mark’s missed all of their free throws at the end, giving Williston their second consecutive win.
Coach Briedis was not satisfied with the narrow win, however. She told the team that they needed to box out because they were losing more than 10 offensive rebounds. She came up with a solution by bringing in the football players to help the girls be tough and aggressive. After one successful practice, it has become weekly thing.
“It’s fun, we like to help them out by helping them compete against bigger bodies. It toughens them up,” said Christian Anzeveno, one of the football team’s captains who every week practices with the girls team.
With only five returning players on the team, the girls had to learn how to work with the new players and adjust to the different levels of play. “I think we’re doing pretty well, especially since we lost five key seniors last year,” said Jordyn Meunier, a sophomore who has been on the team since 8th grade. “I still think we have lots of room to improve and I’m excited for what this season holds.”
On Saturday, (Dec. 8) the Wildcats played Suffield. In the first half they were not playing to their full potential and were behind by 14 points; the score was 27-13 at half time.
Coach Briedis said, “They were told to stop playing afraid and to start playing basketball.” Briedis told the team to dribble with a purpose, make strong passes, and take confident shots.The pep talk during half time carried onto the court, and they ended up winning 48-43.
Cristina Negron ’22, scored 14 points, including the last four free throws, to put Williston up by five. Gates MacPherson ’19 scored 10 points, and Sarah Sullivan ’19 scored 13 points. Coach Briedis said, “It is incredible to have three players score double digits.”
Coach Briedis said, “Our strength is definitely athleticism, willingness to work as a team, defense, and communication. Our weaknesses is playing to other teams’ tempos.”
In related basketball news, captain Sarah Sullivan is three points away from scoring her 1000th point in her Williston career.
This article originally ran in The Willistonian. The photograph is by Kassandra Orcutt ’19.