Co-Captain Emma Kelley ’17 raced passed a flurry of Groton defenders and pulled up for a deep jump shot that rattled into the basket early in the second half to add to Andover’s lead. Kelley extended her double-digit scoring streak to three games on Wednesday, with a season-high 27 points in Andover’s 42-39 loss against Groton. The match brought Andover’s record to 0-3.
Kelley said, “I think for this game – the first game of 2016 – I wanted to come out strong defensively with a lot of confidence as a team.”
Scoring 69 percent of her team’s points, Kelley was the focal point of Andover’s offense on nearly every trip down the floor.
“Emma had a great game today. She played like a leader on both the offensive and defensive ends and kept us in the game,” said Co-Captain Sarah Humes ’16.
Kelley shot efficiently from the field, converting on nearly all of her open looks.
Andover led for most of the game and held a 23-16 lead at halftime. Coming back into the second half, however, the team struggled to stay offensively keen. This proved to be costly, as Groton gained offensive momentum and took the lead.
Andover relied on its defense as the game progressed, but their effort was, ultimately, not enough. It is still working on limiting turnovers and playing better team defense.
Janneke Evans ’18 said, “On defense today, we talked and played well as a team. We did a good job of calling screens.”
Kelley said, “Going into the game, our goals were to beat Groton down the court, minimize turnovers and box out after every shot. We played good fast break [defense], but we often let Groton get the second-chance rebounds. This, paired with our turnovers, caused Groton to catch up with us in the end of the game.”
With the clock running out of time and a three-point deficit, Bailey Colon ’18 scored a 3-pointer to tie up the game at 39-39. Unfortunately, by the end of the game, both teams had reached the double bonus and Groton managed to hit a 2-point shot along with a free throw to seal the victory.
Humes said, “Bailey really stepped up for us at the end. We were on our heels, and she got in and sunk a huge three to keep us in the game. Unfortunately, we just couldn’t hang out at the end and that’s something we have to learn from heading into the next game.”
Despite the upsetting loss, the team is looking to bounce back during practice this week.
Evans said, “Going forward with the season, I hope we can work on limiting our fouls by moving our feet, boxing out and also taking more drives to the basket.”
With its record standing at 0-3, Andover will compete against Choate in its fourth game of the season on Saturday, hoping to secure its first win.
Editor’s Note: Emma Kelley ’17 is an Associate Features Editor for The Phillipian.