After a 56-78 loss to Dexter Southfield on Friday, Andover Girls Basketball proceeded to win 60-57 over Pingree on Saturday and 58-37 over BB&N on Wednesday. Against BB&N, Co-Captain Kennedy Herndon ’23 broke the team’s all-time scoring record with 1,110 total career points, surpassing the previous record-holder Becky Dowling Calder ’94.
Akari Imai ’25 highlighted Kennedy Herndon ’23 for their achievement, which was accomplished in only three seasons. Imai also emphasized the efforts of Valerie Ha ’24 in the same game.
“A big shout out to Kennedy ’cause not only did [they] play well like always, [they] beat the school record. [They] also had good looks, especially to Kiley [Buckley ’23], and this really cool pass to hope for a perfect layup. I think Valerie [Ha ’24] played well as well because she had some really good drives and looks, but she also worked really hard on defense and her defense was really effective; she completely shut down their best player,” wrote Imai in an email to The Phillipian.
Going into Saturday, the team understood that Pingree would likely pose a challenge. However, the team was able to bounce back after a slow start, according to Co-Captain Hope Nardone ’23.
“So going into the Pingree game, we kind of knew that they were a good team and a lot of quick guards, and a lot of shooters. They’re really well-coached. So we were expecting a close game, and it was a close game. Our first quarter we kind of came out slow and a little bit sloppy, but then we picked up in the second quarter after the rest of the game, but they did have some good players that were kind of hard shut down. But I think we all played really well together,” said Nardone.
Imai described the team’s struggles early in its matchup against Pingree. Nonetheless, players gradually increased the energy and ball movement, which greatly benefited the outcome of the game.
“I think the weakness against Pingree was how we started off, because we were messing up the fundamentals and just didn’t have much energy to start off. However, I think we really pulled through after half-time and our strengths were especially our good defense as well as ball movement. It was a really hype game and we won by three points. It was actually so crazy,” said Imai.
Nardone highlighted the team’s ability to make small adjustments in the middle of play against Pingree. The team took full advantage of Pingree’s weaknesses.
“We actually worked really well in transition, which is not something that we always do, but we ran well on this team and got rebounds and pushed the floor, which allowed us some easy points. We also just kind of recognized their weaknesses. They had a really hard time guarding Kiley [Buckley ’23] in the paint, so we just kind of got a turn, and let her go to work. Once we kind of built up, I believe we moved the ball around really well,” said Nardone.
According to Emerson Buckley ’25, the team continued the momentum from Saturday’s game with smooth transitions against BB&N, in great part due to effective organization.
“Despite the fact that we were doing really well on transition, I think we just loaded it down to work on our passing. I think we’re just working on continuing to stay together. I think we’re just going to work on communicating on both defense and offense,” said Buckley.
Andover Girls Basketball will play at the New England Eight Tournament on Saturday and host Holderness on Wednesday.
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