Fail succeeds from long distance for GV

RADNOR — If the Garnet Valley girls basketball team was to continue to succeed when junior forward Kylie Young was injured recently, coach Joe Woods knew his team needed a solution that was fail-safe.

When the Jaguars visited Radnor for a key Central League matchup Saturday afternoon, Woods felt safe with Sydney Fail in his starting lineup. The 5-10 sophomore, a junior varsity starter much of the season, rewarded her coach’s confidence with a strong display of shooting in the first half and a solid floor game as Garnet Valley used a hot start and remained undefeated in league play by rolling past the defending Class AAA district champion Red Raiders, 60-36.

Fail hit three of her four shots in the opening half, all from behind the 3-point arc, as the Jags cruised to a 34-19 advantage in the first 16 minutes of play. Fail finished with 11 points, four rebounds, one steal and one blocked shot.

“That’s more (3-pointers) than I usually get,’ Fail said. “I guess I was just in the right spot at the right time. Actually they told me I was going to be out there to shut down the other team’s big girls. The other players were telling me things that they thought might be helpful.’

Some of those players, including junior starters Maddie Ireland and Sam Tomasetti and junior reserve Emily Mathewson were Fail’s CYO teammates at Holy Saviour School.

“I’ve been playing since I was 5-years-old at (Brandywine Youth Center) and in CYO,’ Fail said. Woods had been following her progress as a junior varsity player this season.

“She was playing really well,’ he said. “I thought she’d be ready when we needed her. Kylie’s back from her injury, and it’s nice to have the two of them available.

“(Fail) has a nice touch from the outside. And I think getting as much playing time as she did with our JV team was great for her confidence.’

Jordan Ireland shot 7-for-11 from the floor — Garnet Valley (10-0 Central League, 14-1 overall) was 22-for-52 for 42.3 percent — and got 12 of her 20 points in the second half to lead the Jags in scoring. Maddie Ireland (seven steals, three assists) and Macy Goldbach (eight rebounds, three steals, two assists and a pair of blocked shots) both dropped in 10 points for the winners. Tomasetti was the only starter who didn’t hit double figures, but she pulled down eight missed shots.

“(Fail) really helped us inside,’ Goldbach said. “We know we’ll need that when we get to the playoffs.’

Radnor (11-4, 7-3), which entered the week with one loss in league play, suffered its second consecutive Central setback. The Red Raiders’ numbers are down because of injuries and illness.

“We’ve got to get back to playing better as a team,’ Radnor coach Mark Jordan said. “Today, we played the team that’s the best in our league and one of the best in the district.

“Then they get a big girl like (Fail) who comes in and hits three (3-pointers) in the first half, and that just makes them even tougher to beat.’

Junior forward Kristin Hamill filled up the stats charts with 12 points, 16 rebounds, three blocked shots and one steal for Radnor. Lauren Pacifico hit a pair of shots from behind the arc and finished with eight points, and sophomore Nicole Massimino added six points, two assists and one steal.

“We have to get back at it with the league games (Strath Haven, Marple Newtown) we have coming up this week,’ Jordan said.


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