SOUTHINGTON — Southington senior Janette Wadolowski got off to a hot start and never cooled as the Southington girls basketball team defeated Plainville 51-43 in a CCC crossover on Tuesday night to improve to 4-3.
Wadolowski, who finished with a game-high 27 points and 15 rebounds, scored 11 first-quarter points as the Lady Knights looked good early on. Their aggressive defense forced Plainville turnovers and Wadolowski got whatever she wanted throughout the first quarter.
In the second, Southington looked like an entirely different team. The Blue Knights scored only four points in the frame as Plainville denied Wadolowski the ball. The Blue Devils double-teamed and smothered the Southington senior whenever she did get the ball.
Plainville daring Southington’s other younger players to beat them worked very effectively in this quarter. Southington missed many opportunities at easy points.
“We were getting good looks, but we just couldn’t put the ball in the basket,” Southington coach Mike Forgione said. “The one thing we preach, even if we’re not making our shots from the perimeter, we have to make our layups and free throws. We missed way too many of those tonight.”
As it usually goes, Plainville’s defense led to offense. For Plainville, Isabel Lozefski was a thorn in Southington’s side as she scored 10 first-half points.
Coming out of the half, Wadolowski got some help from sophomore Madison Hulten. The forward couldn’t get her shot going in the first half as she didn’t score at all. Hulten made up for it with an eight-point second half. Hulten was also in on what seemed like every rebound and had several key blocks.
Another key contributor was freshman Allison Carr. She played great defense all night, holding Plainville’s leading scorer, Caitlin Barber, to just 10 points. Carr also chipped in seven points of her own and her hustle made her a threat in transition.
This allowed Wadolowski to get back on track after only scoring two points in the second quarter. Wadolowski had a 14-point second half to give her 27 on the night.
The key in this game for Southington was rebounding. Wadolowski, Hulten, Carr and another freshman, Kelley Marshall, crashed the boards all night. This led to numerous second-chance opportunities, along with chances to get fouled and shoot free throws.
“We knew we had the size advantage,” said Forgione. “We told our players all week not to bring the ball down because Plainville is a very aggressive team and they would go after it. I feel like if we had just hit some of those layups it would’ve gotten us is in a groove. We did start making some in the second half just not consistently tonight.”