With 2:25 left in the third quarter and the Radnor girls basketball team trailing host Marple Newtown 28-24, the Raiders decided it was time to turn up the temperature on defense.
Thanks to frenetic man-to-man full court press, Radnor forced many turnovers that led to a 22-3 run to close the game giving Radnor the 46-31 come from behind win.
“Our full-court press defense is really important,” said junior Nicole Massimino, who finished with eight points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals. “Our defense causes turnovers which leads us to get easy baskets.”
Senior co-captain Kristin Hamill who finished with finished with a game-high 14 points and four rebounds added, “Our full court press creates many turnovers and gets the team pumped up. It sparks a fire and gets everyone energized.”
After trailing 8-1 to start the game, Radnor clawed its way back to take a 14-10 lead after one thanks in large part to Hamill and senior Fallon Quinn who combined for nine of the 14 points.
Doubling their lead early in the third quarter with the game seemingly turning in their direction, Marple Newtown came right back with Halle Robinson leading the charge before Julia Lynch capped off the 16-0 run with a three-pointer from the wing setting up Radnor’s answer to end the game.
Radnor (4-2; 3-1 Central League) has now posted three consecutive victories including impressive wins over league rivals Harriton and Upper Darby along with non-league foe Interboro.
“Winning these games early is huge,” said Hamill. “It’s always been a question towards the end of the year whether or not we make districts so these early wins definitely help.”
While defense has always been a staple for the Mark Jordan coached Radnor teams, so has their senior leadership. This year is no different with Hamill, Emily DiMarcantonio, Quinn, Trainor Macrone and Racquel Razavi, who is currently nursing a shoulder injury suffered against Harriton.
“We just try to keep everything positive and let the girls know our goal is making it to the postseason,” said Hamill. “When we are in the gym we point up to the PIAA District One Class AAA championship banner we won in 2014 and tell everyone this is our goal.”
“The seniors have meant so much to this program,” said Massimino. “They make sure we keep our heads up and have been great role models. Katie Jordan, who graduated last year did a great job of managing the game and made sure we maintained control. Fallon Quinn has done a great job of stepping into that role this year.”