Blue Knights Battle, Come Up Just Short

February 7, 2019
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LUNENBURG -- Teams that play the Tyngsboro girls’ basketball team need to be scrappy to hang with them. After all, the Tigers play strong defense and are smart shooters.

Basically, making a mistake against Tyngsboro is to your detriment.

The Lunenburg girls are a scrappy bunch and they managed to hang with the newly crowned Mid-Wach D champions until the end, as the Tigers beat the Blue Knights, 63-53, at the Veterans Memorial Gymnasium Wednesday evening.

The win lifts Tyngsboro to 12-4 overall and clinches the league title at 7-0.

Lunenburg dropped to 8-7 (4-3), and can clinch second place in D on Tuesday when the Knights travel to Bromfield. Before that, though, LHS hosts North Middlesex Regional on Friday evening.

Tyngsboro coach Rob Beaudette was pleased with the win.

“The fourth quarter, we got Sam Fagundes involved and moved her around to change the dynamic,” Beaudette said. “We’re on a roll right now, hitting a pretty good stride. We want to be playing our best basketball right now. That’s the name of the game.”

Longtme Lunenburg coach Frank Greene applauded the way his girls hung in there.

“That’s who we are. I’m proud that we battled after we dug ourselves a hole, and just kept battling,” Greene said. “We struggled with turnovers, giving them easy baskets which we couldn’t afford.

“I want them to be scrappier, a bit tougher, and not give up in games like that.”

The Knights had gone on a little 9-1 run in the third to turn a 13-point, 36-23 deficit into a two-possession game, 37-32. A 3-pointer by Catherine Swift (9 points, 7 rebounds) got things rolling before Emily Dunford played the thief in her own end and brought it back for a layup, make it 37-30.

Two free throws by Lauren Blomgren made it a five-point game.

Tyngsboro’s Fagundes (8 points, 4 steals, 3 blocks, 3 rebounds) had ripped a trey from the elbow to make it an 8-point, 40-32 game, but Lunenburg hit the next two shots to make it a one-possession, three-point game as Dunford (team-high 13 points, 6 rebounds) scored with under a minute remaining.

A pair of free throws by Fagundes to open the fourth gave the Tigers a six-point, 43-37 lead, but Bella Petricca wheeled around at the corner for Lunenburg and drove to the hoop.

She drew the hack and added the harm with the old-fashioned three-point play, once again making it a three-point, 43-40 game.

That was as close as Lunenburg came, as Tyngsboro’s Brynn Goulet (14 points), Fagundes, and Katherine Hurynowicz (game-high 25 points, 10 rebounds, 3 blocks, 3 steals) all hit shots to give the tourists needed separation, giving Tyngsboro a 51-40 lead.

Lunenburg managed to cut the deficit to five, but could get no closer.

Tyngsboro had hit its first four shots of the ballgame, and defensively had yielded the lane to the Knights a couple of times, with Swift slashing to the basket a few times.

But the Tigers managed to adjust and denied the lane for a good portion of the game.

“Getting out to the lead early helped us, but as a defensive unit, we boxed out and got into transition,” Beaudette said.

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