WA Girls’ Basketball comes up short against Pentucket Regional

Katie McDermott

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Junior Molly Harding scores a pair of free throws in the fourth quarter.

Katie McDermott

Junior Molly Harding scores a pair of free throws in the fourth quarter.

Westford Academy Girls’ Basketball dealt their third loss of the season in their away game at Merrimack College against Pentucket Regional on Tuesday Dec. 27, going home with a score of 50-43. 

Pentucket had a strong start in the beginning of the first quarter, as their offense was showing up with aggression and consistency. WA fought hard to catch up, but Pentucket maintained a six point lead to lock the score in at 18-12 to end the first quarter. 

During the second quarter, the two teams remained in a battle as senior captain Alanna Saunders got fouled and knocked down a pair of free throws, cutting Pentucket’s lead down by two. Between Saunders and sophomore Diya Jayaraman’s aggressive offensive play, and freshman Olivia Pillsbury’s immense number of rebounds, WA was only down by three with a score of 29-26 at the end of the first half. 

“The other team as a whole was quick and worked well together under pressure,” Saunders said. “They also hit a lot of outside shots, which we needed to defend better.” 

To start the second half, WA continued to have a difficult time on the offensive end, only scoring three points in the third quarter. Pentucket came in with a little more fire under their belts, scoring eight points in the third quarter. The third quarter ended with WA trailing 37-29. 

In the fourth quarter, WA wouldn’t go down without a fight. Their offensive play had much more purpose at the start of the fourth quarter, resulting in junior Molly Harding getting fouled and helping WA cut the deficit against Pentucket to four points. 

After WA took a time out with three minutes left in the game, Pentucket stepped up their game and scored 13 points in the fourth quarter. No matter how hard Saunders, Jayaraman, and many other players fought, they still fell short, losing 50-43. 

I have appreciated how hard the girls have been working in practice and am hoping we can get a few wins early in January,” head coach Russell Coward said.

The team will return to DCL play on Jan. 3 in an away game against Boston Latin at 7 p.m.