Recorder: "Greenfield holds off Frontier, secures 5th straight league title"

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Greenfield holds off Frontier, secures 5th straight league title

By ADAM HARGRAVES

Staff Writer

Published: 2/11/2020 10:57:15 PM

GREENFIELD — For the fifth straight season, the Greenfield High School girls basketball team is a league champion.

The Green Wave downed Frontier Regional, 44-37, at Nichols Gymnasium on Tuesday night to clinch the outright Franklin County League North title.

Katie Haselton battled some of the most aggressive defense she has seen all season, and ended up with 15 hard-earned points.

“It was a huge goal for us,” Haselton said of the league title. “But tournament is coming up. That’s what we are really looking forward to.”

The Red Hawks used a box-and-one with Kaitlyn Mackin following her around for most of the game. When Mackin went to the bench, Alena Maes-Polan had the task of guarding Haselton.

“They definitely stepped it up,” Haselton said of the Frontier defense. “But our younger kids made some big shots.”

With Mackin making things difficult for Haselton, Greenfield (14-4, 7-0) needed contributions from different sources.

“We see box-and-one,” Greenfield coach John Hickey said. “But not as good as that. They have the athletes to do it. Perfect size and quickness. Not many players can do that to Katie (Haselton).”

The Red Hawks covered Haselton aggressively with Mackin, using the rest of their players in a zone.

“We put a lot on Mackin,” Frontier coach Dave Machon said. “I gave her all the props in the world but one player does not make a defense. They knew their slides and took care of their driving lanes. I was very proud of the whole effort from the whole defense.”

Frontier (12-6, 3-3) made a comeback and trimmed the lead to 33-29 going into the fourth quarter.

That’s when some younger players stepped up for the Wave.

Lillia Kachelmeyer nailed a 3-pointer to open the fourth quarter for the Wave. Later in the frame, Amber Bergeron forced a steal and sank a breakaway layup at the other end.

“Everybody is stepping up,” Haselton said. “More and more each game. Everyone is confident in them. They need to be confident in themselves.”

Kachelmeyer scored nine points for the Wave. Racquel Provost scored eight points with seven coming in the first half when the Wave built a lead thanks to a 19-point second quarter.

“As we start playing harder games and challenging ourselves, it’s only going to prepare us more for the playoffs,” Provost said. “I know in my head that they have confidence in me so I need to have confidence in myself.”

The Red Hawks dealt with a good Greenfield defense themselves, and could not quite make enough plays on offense to ultimately take the lead.

Trailing 40-30, the Red Hawks made a run at the Wave in the fourth quarter. Marie Diemand went 2-for-2 from the line and hit a 3-pointer to cut the margin to 40-35.

Amelia Sobieski then scored in the paint to cut the lead within one possession, but the Red Hawks could not get any closer.

Haselton went 4-for-4 to seal the game from the free throw line.

Diemand led Frontier with 14 points. Along with her defensive efforts, Mackin scored 10 points and Sobieski chipped in with seven points.

Haselton had nine rebounds, six assists and six steals for Greenfield in another busy all-around effort. Provost and Tina Reed did some work on the glass themselves with eight rebounds apiece.

Both teams started slowly offensively, and Greenfield led just 9-7 into the second quarter.

In the second period, Bryanna Rivera and Provost hit 3-pointers to give the Green Wave a 21-13 lead.

Greenfield went into the intermission with a 28-21 advantage.

After a Diemand runner and a nice euro-step layup through traffic by Mackin, the Red Hawks got to within 30-27 in the third quarter.

On consecutive trips to the line, Diemand went 2-for-4 to cut the lead to a point.

Kachelmeyer’s runner just before the end of the third quarter gave the Wave a 33-29 lead going into the fourth.

Greenfield next plays at Taconic (14-1) in what will be an extremely difficult independent game on Thursday in Pittsfield. The Red Hawks host Mahar on Friday in FCL North action.