Lady Bulldogs look to build on last year's successful season

By Melanie Savage - Staff Writer
Lebanon - posted Mon., Dec. 17, 2012
Kyia Barnett warms up before a Dec. 11 game against Windham. Photos by Melanie Savage.
Kyia Barnett warms up before a Dec. 11 game against Windham. Photos by Melanie Savage.

Last year, the Lyman Memorial girls’ basketball team made it past the first round of the post-season Class S tourney. Finishing the regular season with a 12-8 record, the Bulldogs beat higher-seeded Old Saybrook to advance to round two, where they fell to Thomaston. This year’s Bulldogs are proud of the team’s 2011-12 accomplishment - the first time the team has made it past round one of the playoffs - and they’d like to build upon last year’s success and advance even further in the tourney. The key to doing that, according to senior tri-captain Chelsey Hussey, will be “working together as a team.”

With only two seniors on the team, this year’s Bulldogs are “a little young,” said Hussey. They are also a small team, having lost their taller shooters to graduation last year. “But we’re fast this year,” said Hussey, and “our team knows how to fill the stat categories.” Lacking height, the team will focus on speed and working hard for rebounds.

Hussey shares the tri-captain spot with senior Casey Kelley, a strong three-point shooter. The third tri-captain is Alyssa Tacchi, a junior with both speed and shooting skill. Junior Briana Padewski will also likely be a heavy scorer for the team, although the points will likely be spread out fairly evenly, according to Hussey. “Everybody scored at least two points against Shepaug [on Dec. 7],” said Hussey. “We don’t have any weak members on the team.” Shepaug was a big win for the Bulldogs, with a final score of 74-36, redeeming them after a season-opener 51-40 loss against Somers. “It was an awesome game,” said Hussey.

The Bulldogs kept the momentum going against Windham on Dec. 11. The Whips played well, but made just enough mistakes to lead to another win for the Bulldogs, with a final score of 44-40.

Going forward, the key to success for Lyman will be to let the team chemistry work for them, according to Hussey. “We have great team chemistry,” she said. “There’s no tension between us.” Also key will be to keep the players’ speed working for, rather than against, the team. “Sometimes we tend to get ahead of ourselves,” said Hussey. “We need to be careful about that.”

The head coach for the Lyman Memorial High School girls’ varsity basketball team is Jeff Gaucher. The assistant coach is Jess Castillo.

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