Rye High Girls’ Basketball
Harrison Defeats Rye in Stunning Comeback
BY CHRIS URBAN AND LEIF SKODNICK
The 19-3 Rye Girls’ Basketball team was eager to take on their rival Harrison Huskies in the Section 1 Class A Semifinal at County Center March 5. The Garnets had beaten Somers 61-59 in a heartstopper in the quarterfinals on Natasha Meyer’s buzzer-beater. Rye played their biggest rival twice during the regular season, losing 56-52 on January 17, then winning easily 57-35 on February 10.
The first quarter was full of turnovers and fouls but that wouldn’t stop Rye’s Teaghan Flaherty from making a desperation last-second three to take the lead lead over the Huskies 10-7 at the end of the quarter.
Amanda Latkany completed two old-fashioned three-point plays just as the new quarter started, which lead to a sizable 26-11 Rye lead with less than two minutes remaining in the half. The Garnets buckled down on defense while maintaining an increased scoring pace throughout the entire quarter.
Heading into the half, Rye led the Harrison 26-15.
The Garnets got off to an excellent start in the second half, going on a 6-0 run to extend their lead to 17 points, 32-15. The Huskies would respond quickly, slicing the Rye lead to single digits with 1:56 remaining in the 3rd. By the end of the third quarter, momentum was shifting in Harrison’s direction, as the difference between the two teams was down to four points, 37-33.
Amanda Latkany hit a two-point jumper to end Rye’s scoring drought, but Harrison continued to be persistent on both ends of the floor creating foul chances and knocking down free throws.
It was anyone’s game with the score 40-39 Rye with 6:02 remaining. But, for the first time in the game, the Huskies grabbed the lead, 41-40, and then extended it on a three-pointer that capped off an astonishing 24-3 run.
Rye Coach Margo Hackett reflected later on Harrison’s run, “It’s a tough place to play in general but they went on a run and we didn’t make any adjustments. Offensively we weren’t ourselves, we didn’t share the ball like we normally do, we didn’t do anything we normally do, and they just outplayed us.”
Harrison continued their winning tactic of getting to the foul line and hitting the shots, as they lead 47-43 with 1:33 left in the game.
Despite Harrison’s ferocious comeback, Rye would not let Harrison win easily. Amanda Latkany made a layup and Teaghan Flaherty hit a three-pointer which drew Rye within one, 52-51, with 19 seconds remaining. The Huskies made another free throw to go up by 2, and then made one last trip to the line that sunk the Garnets chances.
Hackett believed that Rye’s second-half foul trouble “affected our ability to play our game greatly. I stress my defense playing up in your face and on the ball but we weren’t able to do that as much because of our foul trouble. I think Ava Greto played a phenomenal game when she was on the floor, but foul trouble definitely limited our ability on defense.”
Harrison outscored Rye 21-14 in the 4th quarter on their way to a 54-51 victory, the kind that always hurts even more because of the fierce rivalry between these two teams over the years, and because an otherwise outstanding season ended.
Despite this loss, there were some positives to take away, especially for the younger Garnets said Hackett. “Just getting here is eye-opening for some of the JV girls we had here tonight. We’ve had a few gold ball winners on this team, but I think making it here and playing in this environment is going to make them want it even more.”
Latkany had 16 points and eight rebounds for the Garnets, Flaherty scored 14, and Greto added 11 points, 11 rebounds, and four blocks. For Harrison, Ashley Stagg lead with 15 points, Victoria Lendino scored 14 with eight rebounds, and Gabby Marraccini added 13 points.
The 17-6 Huskies advanced to the Section 1 Class A Final vs Hendrick Hudson on March 8 at 5 p.m.