By MICHAEL LETENDRE
BRISTOL – The Bristol Eastern girls basketball squad enters its first contest against Bristol Central finally getting a signature victory.
Off the Lancers 61-55 upset of Enfield last week, the squad is riding a little momentum and that 4-6 ledger after 10 games should not be taken at face value.
But Central coach Steve Gaudet is a veteran, full of all sorts of surprises and is itching to earn his first program win against Eastern.
What’s the deal with this city series showdown? Let’s take a quick look:
Bristol Central at Bristol Eastern
Time and Location: Thursday, Jan. 18 at 6:45 p.m. from Bristol Eastern High School (Thomas M. Monahan Gymnasium)
The Series between the squads…The last time the Rams picked off Eastern was back on Feb. 16, 2004. That day, Central earned a 60-57 win. The Lancers have defeated the Rams twenty-seven straight times now.
Players to Watch: Bristol Central – Ashley Watson (jr, forward), Sarah Guerin (sr, guard), Zoe Sinclair (sr, guard), Allison Jessie (jr, guard), I’deara Gordon (sr, guard), Xia’ian Carrasco (sr, forward), Gwen Torreso (fr, guard), Ashley Macdonald (sr, guard), I’Deara Gordon (sr), Liandra Roldan (so).
Players to Watch: Bristol Eastern – Hannah Maghini (sr, guard), Miranda Janick (sr, guard), Paige McLaughlin (jr, guard), Jordan Ouellette (so, forward), Avery Arbuckle (so, forward), Cheyenne Sargent (sr, forward), Sage Scarritt (fr), Karly Martin (sr, guard/forward).
Bristol Central’s Record: The Rams were 0-10 at press time. However, five of those defeats were by 10 points or less and the squad took on beatable Maloney this past Tuesday. Was that contest victory number one for the Central program?
Bristol Eastern’s Record: The Lancers were 4-6 with a tough date against Middletown earlier this past week. Like Central, five of those losses were by single digits.
A quick look at Bristol Central: Why could the Central girls basketball team defeat Bristol Eastern?
It’s bound to happen as the law of averages has to eventually allow Central to get to the pay window, right?
Don’t sleep on the Rams as Ashley Watson is a really good player who can hit from outside and will nab more than her share of rebounds.
Sarah Guerin can also score and maybe Allison Jessie can chuck in some hoops that night as well.
Zoe Sinclair, Xia’ian Carrasco, and Ashley Macdonald have been there and done that but it could be off the power of a couple youngsters to help Central stay in this one?
Freshman Gwen Torreso is going to be a good one while sophomore Liandra Roldan has seen some floor time for the Rams as well.
Central needs to go for broke because there’s nowhere to go but up.
A quick look at Bristol Eastern: Eastern’s guards and going to cause havoc all over the court and the veteran trio of Hannah Maghini, Miranda Janick, and Paige McLaughlin are a handful for any team.
Maghini directs traffic, will stop and pop for threes and piles up the rebounds and assists during each every game.
Janick certainly can shoot and hit bombs from long range but her passing game is very underrated while McLaughlin is once again the team’s best rebounder – pound-for-pound.
Jordan Ouellette is the perfect small forward for the squad, nearly compiling a triple-double against Berlin and it the team’s most improved player from last season.
She’s going to be a good one and her inside/outside attack can be overlooked when focusing on Eastern’s outstanding guard play.
She is the future of the Lancers’ program.
And with the loss of junior Meredith Foreman, who was really having a good season as an undersized center, it’s up to the committee of Avery Arbuckle, Cheyenne Sargent, and freshman Sage Scarritt to hold the fort.
All three have put together some good moments on the hardwood manning the middle.
Senior Karly Martin will also see time off the pine for Eastern.
That group is a lot to handle for Central.
If Eastern can make hoops, get into its full-court defense, and scores in transition, it’s going to be a long night for the Rams.
And the winner is…Bristol Eastern. Want a final score? Go to the game…