Double-Double by Kiss-Rusk ’12 Propels Andover to Victory

Alex Kiss-Rusk ’12 put up an outstanding double-double with 20 points and 14 boards against Pomfret to lead Andover Girls Basketball to its first and only win of the season in the Rivers Holiday Tournament. Pomfret struck first, hitting two three pointers right out of the gate to take a 6-0 lead, but Andover climbed back in the first half, and never looked back. Led by 20 points and 14 rebounds from Alex Kiss-Rusk ’12, Andover knocked off the defending NEPSAC Class B champions by 13 points. Andover’s active offense was on display this game, but it was the stifling defense that truly stole the show, holding Pomfret to only 29 points in the 41-29 win. In a constant back-and-forth game, Andover had to fight very hard against an undefeated Rivers team. Down by only 22-20 at halftime, Andover was unable to stop the surging offensive firepower of Rivers in the second half. Rivers leapt ahead by as much as 13 points, and were able to hold on to their lead despite a late-game run by Andover led by stars Kiss-Rusk, who had11 points and 5 rebounds, and Leah Humes ’12, who had 8 points and 6 steals. Andover suffered a very close 46-41 defeat. “Rivers just kept knocking down threes at the end, and it was tough to stop,” said Humes. “Alex was great on the boards, and unfortunately we just weren’t able to pull through in the end.” Humes and Kiss-Rusk were both named to the All-Tournament Team in this tournament. Andover faced a devastating loss at the hands of Loomis in the only regular season game of the break in a 50-49 loss after a buzzer beater by Loomis for the win. With two minutes left, Andover was leading by ten points, until Loomis heightened their defense with a full-court press. Turning the ball over numerous times down the stretch, Andover’s lead began to creep away. Intentionally fouled late in the game, Andover failed to make some key free throws which led to more possessions for Loomis. In the final seconds of the game, Andover held on to a two point-lead when a miracle shot from well beyond the three-point arc by Loomis sunk into the net just as time expired. “We let them come back and ended up in a position to defend a small lead and the girl made a great three,” said Captain Megan Robertson ’11. “We learned that you can’t have huge defensive lapses or else the other team will capitalize on that.” Andover faced yet another tough loss this Wednesday, falling to Cushing by a score of 41-32 to bring Andover’s record to 1-4. Humes led the team in scoring with ten points. Although the start to the season may not have been ideal for Andover, the team is still confident that they will bounce back. “Overall, I think that staying that extra ten days over break really helped our team mesh on and off the court,” said Alex Kiss-Rusk. Robertson said, “I want to help the new players become acclimated to playing on the team,” said Robertson. “Even though some of them have played at a high level, we still need to get used to playing with each other. Each practice and game improves this substantially. I really want our team to be well acquainted off the floor as well since that will contribute to team chemistry as well.”