Patriots too much for Pride
CUMBERLAND – Thursday evening provided the perfect opportunity for Blackstone Valley Prep to officially open its beautiful new gymnasium, located at 65 Macondray St., perhaps two blocks from the Lusitania Club.
Most of the Pride, however, wish it could have come under better circumstances.
Davies Tech lit up the scoreboard during the two foes’ Injury Fund clash before at least 100 fans, most of them students. Senior captain Julie Desautel produced 23 points, four steals and two rebounds, and junior center Thalia Philippe chipped in nine points, 19 boards and six blocks during an easy 60-28 victory.
Freshman Ana Gomes managed four points and nine rebounds, while junior Sam Baako added seven points, classmate Tiana Spooner four and Brenna Williams the sane for the Patriots.
Senior tri-captain Simone Barros paced BVPwith a teamhigh 12, not to mention five boards and three assists. Other key contributions came from sophomore Sole Miranda (six points, two rebounds); senior tri-captain Gladis Ricaurte (four points); and fellow captain Faith Ramos (two points, seven boards).
“Jules had 23, and that’s how she can play,” stated veteran head coach Joe Handy about one of his standouts. “She’s been playing with a lot of intensity since her freshman yeat, and she’s continuing to build confidence. She had a great year last season, and she was very eager to get that momentum started this year.
“She’s a work horse; you can tell by the way she plays the game.”
Handy admitted his squad’s campaign opener was “pretty ugly,” as Davies closed with 28 turnovers and the Pride 29, but wasn’t as upset as one would think he’s be.
“It was really sloppy out there, but it’s the beginning of the year; you have to wait and see how the teams jell,” he noted. “We only have one senior, so we’re pretty young, and you’re going to make your share of mistakes.
“I’m still going to throw them into the fire and expect them to play aggressive basketball from start to finish. If a few turnovers and fouls come as a result, I’ll take it, as long as we’re improving.”
Offered BVP mentor Ed Laskowski: “We had too many turnovers, and that’s the same big problem we had last year. We’re going to try to reduce the amount, though it’s going to take time. We just have to play smarter while still being fast and aggressive.
“The aggressive part? That’s why so many fouls were called against us. We just have to play cleaner with more aggressiveness. That should come with time.”
The Pride led only once; that’s when Ramos drained a 15-foot jumper for the first bucket of the game with 2:38 expired in the first half. The Pats responded with a 7-0 surge, courtesy in part of a Desautel basket and trey, and it seemed every time the visitors padded the lead, BVP would respond.
Case in point: With 2:12 remaining before intermission, Ricaurte canned a 16footer to slice the deficit to 17-13, yet – over the final 1:48 – Desautel netted three foul shots and Spooner a short jumper to nail down a 22-13 cushion.
Destiny Baptista’s putback and Cruz’s hook in the initial 61 seconds of the final session pushed Davies’ cushion to 26-13 before the Pride rallied for six straight points. Barros snatched a steal for the layup, Miranda nailed a jumper and Barros turned another theft into an easy bucket, that with 13:24 remaining, to knife it to 26-19.
Exactly 35 ticks later, Desautel stole the ball and sank the lay-in, and that sparked a 17-0 flurry over the following 6:02. Highlights of the run included a Cruz putback, a Desautel three-bomb, Maddie Brassard’s trey and Philippe’s putback 7:22 remaining in regulation.
That gave the Pats a stout 43-19 advantage.
BVP finally ended its drought when sophomore Kaylee Alvarez dropped a long jumper 56 seconds later, 15 after Philippe’s lone free throw, to make it 44-21.
Davies Tech forward Thalia Phillipe (right) scored 11 points in the Patriots’ 60-28 Injury Fund victory over BVP Thursday.