Panthers putting together a season to remember

By Melanie Savage - Staff Writer
Storrs - posted Wed., Jan. 11, 2012
Morgan Olander looks for the shot for E.O. Smith, blocked by RHAM's Sarah Veilleux. Photos by Melanie Savage.
Morgan Olander looks for the shot for E.O. Smith, blocked by RHAM's Sarah Veilleux. Photos by Melanie Savage.

The E.O. Smith girls’ basketball team continued what is shaping up to be a season for the record books with a Jan. 5, 63-50 victory over the RHAM Sachems. The Sachems were coming off of a 56-26 loss to Tolland, where, according to head coach Tim Guernsey, they “were flat on both ends of the court.” The Panthers entered the match with a 7-0 record.

The Sachems weren’t flat against the Panthers; they kept up the intensity, even after a rough second period which brought numerous unanswered baskets for E.O. Smith, sending the Sachems to the locker room facing a serious deficit at half-time.

This year’s E.O. Smith team is good, very good. Standouts include Murphy Murad, who is small, fast and relentless. Morgan Olander is a formidable presence as the Panthers’ center, making it look effortless as she snatches a rebound from above the head of her opponent or blocks a shot. Serving as the team’s leader is Ashley Forand, who currently ranks as the number six player for three-pointers, and the number three player for assists, according to www.casciac.org (Olander ranks fourth for blocks).

The Panthers are currently ranked number one in the state, according to maxpreps.com. Their upcoming game against number two-ranked Tolland High School is a must-see for the high school basketball fan. The game takes place at home, beginning at 7 p.m.
Head coach for the E.O. Smith Panthers is Kirk Murad.
 


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