No. 2 Windsor ousts East Lyme girls in Class L quarters
Windsor — East Lyme exerted just as much effort as it did in last year's Class L state tournament quarterfinal game, in which the Vikings scored 69 points in an uptempo overtime loss to Wethersfield.
Only this time, against a Windsor team which suffocated the Vikings — and ultimately flustered them — it was a defensive standoff instead of an offensive duel.
"We knew who they were," East Lyme coach Sal Fiorillo said as his team's season came to a close Monday night, unable to score quite enough against the punishing Windsor defense. "We knew they were going to play great man-to-man defense in the half-court set. We knew they were going to be aggressive and hand check us the whole game."
No. 10 East Lyme, held to just two points in the second quarter, fell to No. 2 Windsor by a final of 42-32.
That allowed Windsor (24-2), ranked fourth in the GameTimeCT top 10 poll, to advance to Friday's semifinals against either No. 6 Pomperaug or No. 19 Hand.
It also marked the final career game for East Lyme seniors Megan Bauman (10 points) and Katie Durkee (6 points), with Durkee hitting the opening shot of the game, a pull-up jump shot which hit all net and gave no indication of the Vikings' offensive difficulties to come.
Bauman, meanwhile, leaves as the program's all-time leading scorer with 1,352 points.
"As a coach you look at your players ... if they play that hard for me every day, I'm going to be a happy coach," Fiorillo said. "(Sophie) Dubreuil went into the stands for a loose ball tonight. I'm sad that this is over, but the effort of my girls, the extreme passion, desire ... we played our butts off."
East Lyme (15-10) appeared to handle Windsor's pressure early, getting off to an 8-3 lead on two straight driving layups by Dubreuil. Nadia Tarhini had four straight points for the Vikings later in the quarter that made it 14-7 and Bauman scored on an offensive rebound to end the quarter with East Lyme up 16-12.
Tarhini's putback gave East Lyme an 18-16 lead with 4 minutes, 48 seconds remaining in the second quarter. The Vikings went the next 7:23 without scoring before Durkee hit a running bank shot to break the ice and Bauman followed with two free throws to pull the team within 24-22 with 4:15 left in the third quarter.
But it seemed to get tougher and tougher for East Lyme to score, with the Vikings missing several layups and turning the ball over repeatedly against Windsor's signature fullcourt press.
Windsor led just 33-30 after the Vikings found Bauman on a backdoor cut with 3:20 remaining, but the Warriors went on a 9-0 run — getting seven points from the foul line — to wrap things up.
"The beginning of the game, we had it going. We were growing a little frustrated," Bauman said. "They played us really tight defensively and we didn't capitalize on our opportunities."
"One of the prerequisites was that we needed to keep our poise," Fiorillo said, "keep our grace under pressure. We lost our poise a little bit."
Rebecca Fraley and Denise Solis each had 12 points for Windsor.
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