GIRLS BASKETBALL: Lyman Hall capitalizes on Career opportunity to post third straight victory

GIRLS BASKETBALL: Lyman Hall capitalizes on Career opportunity to post third straight victory

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WALLINGFORD — Sharing the ball well and suffocating Career Magnet on defense, the Lyman Hall girls basketball team collected its third straight victory on Monday night.

The Trojans downed the Panthers 53-29 in SCC crossover action at the Lyman Hall gymnasium.

LH (5-3) was paced in scoring by junior guard Brianna Mik and by 5-foot-9 center Natalie Panagrosso in the one-sided win. Panagrosso had 12 of her career-high 14 points in the first half and Mik had 13 of her game-high 15 points in the second half. 

LH led 32-13 at the half.

Lyman Hall opened with a 14-6 advantage after the first quarter. Senior Kiera Farley capped the quarter with a trey in the closing seconds.

The Trojans came out with pressure to start the second quarter and steals by Grace Gagliardi and Julia Capello (8 points, 7 rebounds) resulted in easy buckets.

Farley’s trey started a 11-0 LH run that expanded to a 22-6 advantage with 6:23 left in the first half. Panagrosso had back-to-back layups to cap the rally.

Both Panagrosso layups were assisted by Gagliardi. The junior point guard also had a 3-pointer during that run. Gagliardi had all five her assists in the first half.

“I felt I needed to step up,” said Panagrosso, who also grabbed six rebounds. “We wanted to be 5-3. It was exciting. I usually don’t make all of my layups, so that was exciting. I’m trying to set more screens and help my team by working as hard as I can.”

Lyman Hall coach Tom Lipka said he was pleased with his team’s performance in the first half.

“We did a good job holding them to one shot,” Lipka said. “Against a team like this, we have to set the tempo. We were in control by halftime. We did what we had to do to win the game.”

Mik had a huge second half as the Trojans ripped off a 13-0 run in the third quarter to go up 47-18. Mik had nine of those 13 points, including back-to-back treys and three straight hoops.

Panagrosso capped the rally with her lone bucket of the second half. The LH regulars didn’t see much time in the final quarter as Lipka emptied his bench.

The Trojans’ current three-game winning streak has come at home after five road games to open the season

“Ever since our loss to Sheehan we are trying to come together as a team,” Mik said. “This win was a good confidence boost for us. Our connections have been better in the last three games. Our passing is better. Our chemistry in practice has helped us. Our defense is special and we’ve been working on it.”

Lipka noted that any of his five starters are capable of scoring in double digits on any given night.

“They look to give that extra pass,” the head coach said. “It’s a good thing.”

Hailey Bruneau had only four points, but excelled in other areas for the Trojans. The senior collected nine blocks, seven rebounds and seven steals. Mik also finished with seven rebounds.

TayJana Greene had a team-high 14 points for the Panthers, who dropped to 0-7.