By Ron Buck
SOUTHINGTON — The storied high school basketball career of Janette Wadolowski came to an end Monday night in a 61-54 loss to Glastonbury in the first round of the CIAC Class LL Tournament.
Wadolowski scored a game-high 36 points, but No. 13 Southington’s lone senior didn’t get enough support to beat a well-balanced Tomahawks squad. Wadolowski became the Lady Knights’ second all-time leading scoring with 2:36 to play in the first quarter.
“I actually came into the game really sick, but I didn’t care,” Wadolowski said. “I was going to give it all on the court. It’s my senior year.”
And try as she might down the stretch, Wadolowski was unable to push the Lady Knights past Glastonbury, which beat Southington for the second time this season. Southington lost to 20th-seeded Glastonbury 39-29 in just its third game of the season.
Alli Carr chipped in six points for Southington and her back-to-back baskets in the third quarter got the Lady Knights within 30-29 before Glastonbury took a 42-37 lead into the fourth quarter.
“I think we were nervous; I know I was,” said Carr, a freshman starter.
With Wadolowski scoring 19 of Southington's 23 first-half points, the Lady Knights' youngsters missed all seven of their attempts in the first quarter. And it wasn't until sophomore Madison Hulten's putback of a Wadolowski missed free throw that a Southington player other than Wadolowski found the basket.
Southington's underclassmen were 1-for-13 from the field in the first half.
“Welcome to LL,” Southington head coach Mike Forgione said. “Are you kidding me. We were 15-5 and got a tough draw. But give Glastonbury credit. They dropped to (No. 20) after losing a few games they should have won, and they made the shots tonight to win.
“But as I told them, ‘Don’t be mad, be disappointed.’ We are a young team. Tonight was something to grow from and to learn from.”
Featuring the lineup of sophomores and freshmen, Southington (16-7) was tied with Glastonbury 47-47 on a three-point play by Wadolowski with 5:17 to play and trailed just 56-54 with 37 seconds to play on a Hulten basket. But Glastonbury (13-10), which was led by 17 points from both senior Aleigha Partee and freshman Charlotte Bassett, sealed the win by converting three of four free throws in the game’s final seconds.
Heading into Monday’s loss, Waldolowski was averaging 23.1 points and 11.1 rebounds a game. She went over the 500-point mark in Southington’s CCC quarterfinal loss to RHAM. She passed Ashley Borofsky (1,203 points) on Monday night to trail only Southington’s all-time girls basketball scorer and school Hall of Famer Val DePaolo (1,333).
“Give Janette credit. She’s really good and deserves a lot of attention,” Glastonbury head coach Chris Vozzolo said. “I was proud of the way we as a team, not just Lyndsey, defended her (down the stretch).”
Wadolowski did all she could to keep the Lady Knights in the game in the first half, scoring 13 of Southington’s first 15 points. After Glastonbury took its first lead of the game seconds in the second quarter, Wadolowski’s 3-pointer put the Lady Knights back in front 18-16.
But after missing what may have been her easiest shot of the first half – a breakaway layup – Glastonbury reeled off eight straight points to lead 24-18 on Charlotte Bassett’s deep 3-pointer at the 3:19 mark of the second quarter.
Heading into the fourth quarter, down 42-37, Wadolowski opened the frame by nailing a 3-pointer to get Southington within 42-40. Two free throws by Kelley Marshall tied the game 42-42 with 7:09 to play.
Glastonbury responded with five quick points, capped by Lyndsey Newhouse's 3-pointer to regain command until Wadolowski tied it up again at 47.
After Wadolowski's 3-pointer to start the fourth-quarter scoring, the Lady Knights didn't get a another field goal from someone other than Wadolowski until 37 seconds remained, when Hulten's basket got Southington within 56-54.
Southington's youngsters did make all four of their free throws, but a tiring Wadolowski 36th and final point came with 1:37 to play. Wadolowski played all 32 minutes and scored 11 points the fourth quarter.
Mercy 70, Cheshire 26: The No. 2 Tigers sent the No. 31 Rams packing with the first-round decision in Middletown.
Mercy improved to 23-1 and advances to Thursday’s second round to host Stamford. Cheshire’s season is over at 8-14.
Meghan Deville scored a game-high 15 points for Mercy. Bella Santoro (13) and Jessica Carroll (11) were also in double figures for the SCC champs.
Mia Juodaitis and Sara Mulligan scored nine points apiece to pace the Rams. All of Mulligan’s scoring came on 3-pointers.