The varsity girls started off the season strong, beating Springbrook 64-20, setting the tone for the rest of the season.
The starting lineup was led by senior Sivan Bennaim who gave them a boost of confidence before the game. “We were ready when we came out to play. We had a good strategy to win and knew we had to execute the plan and that’s exactly what we did.”
The rest of the starting lineup was made up of sophomore Sere Doumbouya, junior Iman Idrissa, sophomore Caitlyn Kwan and freshman sensation Kaitlin Mariani. The team was nervous in the beginning and had less than 20 total points as a team in the first quarter. Once they calmed down and got settled, they started dominating the game, limiting Springbrook to fewer than 10 points in the half. “The defensive effort really boosted our morale and gave us a spark of energy that we needed to win the game. If we play that type of defense every game, it will be hard to stop us,” Bennaim said.
The team played a great game defensively with a total of 14 steals and three blocks, led by Mariani with four steals. They were also all over the court, grabbing 12 offensive rebounds and 12 defensive rebounds. They were led by Bennaim who was unstoppable in the paint, scoring 15 points.
This was the first game for players such as senior Miranda Wright and it was exciting. “The game was moving a lot faster than I was expecting. It wasn’t like the walkthroughs we went through and was definitely an eye-opener but I had a lot of fun. It was very exhilarating,” Wright said.
Mariani is a big addition to the team this year. She is the sister of former point guard Ryan Mariani for the boys’ basketball team and will be playing point guard as well. She is looking to start and will be a big help in getting more wins. With freshman Allie Marcellus being out for the season with an ACL injury, Mariani is forced to play into a bigger role and that is exactly what she did against Springbrook. Mariani was dishing out dimes with four assists and had nine points. She was distributing the ball and spreading the floor well, which was essential in their win.
The next game will be on Dec. 10 against Blair, and was too late to run in this issue.