Girls' travel basketball league ends with tournament

By Tom Phelan - Staff Writer
Enfield - posted Thu., Mar. 10, 2011
Enfield took first place in the NCC tournament. Photos by Tom Phelan.
Enfield took first place in the NCC tournament. Photos by Tom Phelan.

The North Central Connecticut Travel Basketball league wrapped up its season of play with its division playoff tournament on Mar. 5-6 at Enrico Fermi High School. The league, for girls in the seventh and eighth grades, included teams from nine towns – Canton, East Granby, Ellington, Enfield, Granby, Manchester, Stafford, Suffield and Vernon.

Granby was ranked #1 in the league at the end of the season, Canton and Enfield were tied for second and Suffield finished in third place. But after 10 games over Sat.and Sun., Enfield and Suffield rose to the top and played in the championship game. Enfield prevailed in that contest, defeating Suffield 26-21.

Enfield led 14-7 at the half, but within the first two minutes after intermission, Suffield doubled their score, and appeared to be right back in the game. With 1:01 left in the game, the two teams were only two points apart, at 23-21.

When Tina Leonardo hit one of two free throws inside the last minute of the game, three points separated the two teams. But with 34 seconds on the clock, Leonardo drove to the basket, and dropped her lay-up in to finish the scoring.

Enfield’s Hannah Lempitsky, perhaps the tallest player on the floor, using her height and her athleticism, blocked the shots of several Suffield players.

Her teammate, Lauren Cody, though at the other end of the altitude spectrum, managed the flow of the Enfield offense, and persistently hounded Suffield ball handlers.

Suffield post player Arianna Flagg was forced to leave the game in the second half, after coming down hard on her knee. She was not able to return.

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