Littleton’s Taylor Glidden launches a jumper with Groveton’s Jena Wheelock defending Friday night at Littleton High. Charlie Lentz/The Courier. (click for larger version)
December 14, 2011LITTLETON — How strong is Littleton this season? Despite a ragged first quarter and with two of their starters sitting much of the game with foul trouble — the Crusaders easily dispensed with defending state champion Groveton 46-27 last Friday night at Littleton High.
"It's not an individual sport. It's a team sport," said Littleton coach Dale Prior. "I think we have enough weapons to step up."
Littleton shot just 3-of-14 from the field in the first quarter and trailed Groveton 8-7 heading into the second frame. With the Crusaders up 15-14 with 3:54 left in the half, Littleton senior guard Julia Winn picked up her third foul and exited to the bench.
In Winn's absence, sophomore guard Maggie Hadlock helped run the team and senior guard Taylor Glidden found her scoring touch as Littleton went on a 7-0 run over the final 2:12 of the first half.
Hadlock was ready when called upon.
"I knew I had to be ready and be prepared for what I was going against," Hadlock said. "I knew that I had to step it up. We knew we had to work well as a team."
Glidden (game-high 20 points) started the 7-0 second-quarter surge with a pair of free throws and capped the rally with an old-fashioned three-point play with 1.1 seconds left in the second quarter to give Littleton a 22-14 lead at the intermission.
"Maggie, off the bench, did a nice job of controlling the point," said Prior. "That's probably the first time in Julia's career that she's had three fouls in the first half. I thought Maggie off the bench in the first half was phenomenal. Not only did we keep the lead but we extended the lead and in large part because of Taylor's shooting. Taylor was definitely the MVP of this game."
Winn didn't return until 3:43 left in the third quarter but by that juncture Littleton led 28-18. Littleton senior forward Lindsey Glines sank an 11-footer at the third-quarter buzzer to put the Crusaders up 34-20.
Hadlock, along with sophomore Chynna Lowe and freshman Madi McNamara — all came off the bench to contribute valuable minutes. Littleton starting junior forward Dori Horne sat most of the game with foul trouble. Winn has been Littleton's top scorer the past two seasons but she kept company with Horne on the pine much of the game and failed to hit a bucket from the field against Groveton. No worries — Littleton had enough weapons to rout the defending state champs — perhaps the rest of the North Country should worry about that.
"There's too much experience in this group to be rattled by what's going on," Prior said "Defensively, all I night I thought we worked, that's a good team. We held them to 27 points. Defensively, that's a great effort tonight. To get win against a quality team like that, in our home gym, is definitely a good start."
Groveton 8-6-7-6 — 27
Littleton 7-15-12-12 — 46
Jena Wheelock 4 0-0 8, Shauna Randall 2 2-2 6, Makenna Burke 1 1-2 3, Caroline Hall 1 3-4 5, Talia Bedell 2 1-4 1. Totals 10 7-12 27.
Lindsey Glines 2 0-0 4, Maggie Hadlock 2 0-0 4, Julia Winn 0 5-7 5, Taylor Glidden 6 6-13 20, Alyssa Keefe 6 1-2 13, Dori Horne 0 0-0 0, Madi McNamara 0 0-0 0, Chynna Lowe 0 0-0 0. Totals 16 14-22 46.