By Avonlea Cummings
Hometown Weekly Reporter
The tension built and the audience was on the edge of its seat Friday night when the Medfield Warriors girls basketball traveled to Westwood for a heated match-up. The Warriors faced off against the Wolverines tirelessly as they made a second-half comeback to earn a crucial 39-35 victory.
The Warriors started slowly against the fast-paced Wolverines, who looked hungry for early points. By the end of the first half, the score was 25-24 in favor of the Wolverines.
In the second, the Warriors came out with a brand-new spark of passion. Medfield would let up only ten more points in the half, and was all over Westwood’s defense, shooting hoops left and right. By the fourth quarter, Westwood had to quickly find another way to get back into the game, but they were no match for the Warriors. As the Warriors closed the second half of the game, Kate Olenik earned herself 14 points; Tess Baacke had ten points and five rebounds; Izzy Kittredge took home nine points and 12 rebounds; and Mary Palladiaro and Sadie Cumming both collected three points.
Senior captain Kate Olenik and junior captain Annie Stanton both knew this was going to be a tough competition, but were ecstatic with the win.
“It was definitely a team effort tonight,” said Stanton. “I think that towards the end, Kelly had some great rebounds to help us out and give us that win. In the locker room, we talked about coming in strong in the second half because we knew we weren’t playing well in the first. We had to really amp up our energy.”
Warriors head coach Mark Nickerson was pleased to bring home a win after the tough competition the Wolverines brought to the court.
“We had a great game, but we knew they’re a much different team,” said Nickerson. “They’re athletic. They’re aggressive. They can shoot and score at the rim. I think we picked it up defensively. We were able to pick up shots and rebound. Kelly Blake had huge offensive rebounds for us; she’s not a rebounder, but it’s all about the heart. We talked about how rebounds are all about the heart and hustle, [and] she extended that in the last quarter.”
At the time of print, the Warriors are now 15-0 this season as they head to their next game on Tuesday, February 7, at Norwood High School.