By Keith Harrington
A late second quarter spurt proved to be decisive as Hartford pulled away to defeat Argyle-Fort Edward 57-29 in Adirondack League girls basketball.
The Tanagers were clinging to a 19-12 lead in the closing minutes of the first half and had only scored two points in the second stanza, but a 9-0 run before heading to the locker room increased the lead to 28-12. Hartford was never challenged again.
“Last night I lost one of my big starters (Cailin Severance), a good 3-point shooter and ball handler up in Schroon Lake, out with an ankle injury,” Hartford coach Jason Johnson said. “I brought a JV player up. We stepped up all the way through. Every one of my kids played as a team and they just wanted it.”
Once they gained momentum Johnson’s team never let it go. They outscored the Scots 9-6 in the third quarter and 20-11 in the final stanza.
Hartford led 17-7 after a quarter. The Tanagers dominated right from the start, but it took awhile for the shots to start falling.
“They just wouldn’t drop. Once they started going in you saw the smiles coming out and they were all enjoying it and having a good time,” Johnson added.
One Tanager who has been on a role as of late is the coach’s daughter Mckenzie Johnson. Johnson, one of the top 3-point shooters in the area, followed up her recent career high 26 point effort with a 24 point, 12 rebound double-double.
Alawnah Dunda also had a double-double with 14 points and 15 rebounds. Brynn Tyler who came up from the junior varsity contributed six points. Cassandra Wade handed out eight assists.
Hartford is the defending Class D champion, and a state semifinalist but has been rebuilding after losing three starters, including a pair of 1,000 point scorers. Johnson hopes his young team is rounding into form at just the right time.
“In the beginning we knew we were going to take our bumps and bruises rebuilding. They’re playing really well together. They’re starting to mesh. Now they’re getting it and cruising together, Johnson concluded.
Carrie Humiston scored 14 points for Argyle-Fort Edward.
Hartford is now 5-6, 6-10. Argyle is 1-9, 2-13.
Photo Credit-Lori Severance