NEWTON, NJ—The Newton High School Girls Basketball team beat Hackettstown 58-39, during the Quarterfinal round of the Hunterdon/Warren/Sussex tournament on Saturday.
"Well this was our fourth time playing Hackettstown - which is tough," Head coach Whitney Dugan said. "It isn't fun to play any team, that many times in a season. Earlier in the season we played them back to back, once in the Christmas tournament and then regular season, we lost both which was frustrating - once by nine and the other time by two. We then played them again, at home, and beat them by 18.
"Both teams were extremely motivated for this game, winner goes to the semi-finals. We wanted to prove the first win wasn't a fluke and they wanted to avenge their loss. Those are the fun games to play, the one that have high stakes."
Kaitlyn Lynch, a high scorer throughout the Braves’ season, once again led the team in points, contributing 22.
Following her up, adding 11 points, was Irelee Ferguson, while Jasmine Luciani added 10 points to the score. Jade Luciani also contributed eight points.
Lynch had three rebounds, one assist, and three steals, while Jade Luciani lead in rebounds with eight, and Courtney McHale led in steals with six.
Overall, offensively, the Braves made 14 2-pointers, three 3-pointers, and 21 foul shots. They also had a total of 11 assists. Defensively, the Braves got 28 rebounds off Hackettstown’s shots, 14 steals, and two blocks.
"We had two days to prep for them which was great and the girls executed the game plan wonderfully," Dugan said. "They handled their pressure and physicality with poise and really looked for each other, making the extra pass - not settling for a good shot but a great shot. Kaitlyn was our high scorer but her teammates did a great job getting her the ball in ideal situations to score."
As to what's next, Dugan said the Braves play Warren Hills in the semis and "if we continue to play good defense and play hard and for each other we have a good chance of making it to the final. "
The game is scheduled to occur on Saturday, February 18, but a time and place have yet to be released.