E.O. Smith advances to quarterfinals
By Melanie Savage - Staff Writer
Storrs - posted Fri., Mar. 4, 2011
The E.O. Smith girls’ basketball team (number two seed Division L) advanced to the quarterfinal round of the state tourney after a nail-biting win against Brookfield (number 15 seed) on March 3. The game was close for the duration, but the teams kicked the suspense level up a notch for the last few minutes of period four. “It was a bit close for comfort,” said head coach Kirk Murad. “Number 11 really killed us. Her offense was better than our defense.” Number 11 is Brookfield sophomore Julia Depoi. Later in the game, sophomore guard Murphy Murad was assigned to cover Depoi. “That really shut her down,” said Murad. “They had a very hard time scoring the last three or four minutes.”
With less than a minute left to go in the game, and Smith ahead by a score of 48-46 senior team captain Maggie Sundberg sank two free throws to give the Panthers some breathing room. Seconds later, a three-pointer by Brookfield brought the score back to within one point. A foul sent Murad to the line, where she missed the first shot and made the second, giving Smith back a two-point lead.
With six seconds on the clock, freshman Holly Worski found herself on the line. She also sank one of two shots. It was 52-49 E.O. Smith. Depoi was fouled with just three seconds on the clock. She sank her first, but missed her second, bringing the score to 52-50 E.O. Smith. With two seconds on the clock, Worski was fouled again. This time she made both shots, sealing the win for E.O. Smith with a final score of 54-50.
“We knew coming in that they were a very well-coached team,” said Murad. “They certainly played well here.”
E.O. Smith will face number 10 seed Platt at home for the quarterfinal round. The game is scheduled for Monday, March 7, beginning at 7 p.m.