Ballers look to rebound heading into playoffs

Samir Patankar, Sports Editor

Standing with a 8-8 record, girls’ basketball is doing much better than they did last year, already winning seven more games.

After two close-call wins against Einstein on Jan. 7 and Century on Dec. 28, the Patriots suffered a blowout loss against Churchill. Senior Sivan Bennaim led the Patriots with six points while freshman Kaitlin Mariani led the Patriots with three assists. Mariani is having an outstanding season, leading the DMV in assists. Junior Iman Idrissa was dominant on defense, recording two steals and a block.

Soon after this loss, the Patriots had another close game with BCC on Jan. 15, losing. While the girls lost, this was another breakout game for Mariani and sophomore Caitlyn Kwan. They combined for 32 points and two steals. Mariani was facilitating the offense well, dishing out five assists. The Patriots never stopped fighting despite being down the whole game.

The Patriots responded after the close loss, dominating Wheaton on Jan. 24, 78-36. The girls came out hot, scoring 33 points in the first quarter. Irdrissa led the team with 19 points while Mariani led with nine assists. She was dishing the ball all over the court, especially to Bennaim who averages the most points on the team. She had 12 points this one, shooting six for 11.

The girls followed up the dominant performance with a blowout, beating Kennedy 63-33 on Jan. 28. This was a solid game for the girls, as junior Lauren Geier, Idrissa, and Bennaim all had 12 points. Mariani stole the show once again, with a career high 12 assists, showing why she’s the best passer in the county.

The girls dominated again on Feb. 3 against Magruder, winning 58-14. While this was an impressive win, the girls were focused on taking down Seneca Valley. Senior Miranda Wright was excited for this game. “They have a superstar on their team who is one of the best in the county. I can’t wait to see how we play against her,” Wright said.

The Patriots played Seneca Valley on Feb. 7, losing. A big crowd showed up for this game and they were going wild. Senior Jasia Oliver from Magruder came out firing, making two threes to start the game. This woke the Patriots up as they came storming back, taking the lead at half. They went back and forth, but unfortunately, Oliver put them over the top, scoring over 20 points.

The next game is on Feb. 11 at Damascus, was too late to be covered in this issue