Head Coach Bob Sullivan and his Lady Dragon basketball team and it didn’t go as expected, as the girls were humbled on their home court by Quincy HS, 44-35.
While Duxbury started out strong, and ended with a late-game rally that fell short, it were the two middle periods that cost the Lady Dragons a chance to reward Sullivan with a win in his first Duxbury start.
Senior Caitlyn Lowry got the Presidents going early, hitting all six points in Quincy’s 6-2 lead in the first four minutes. But Duxbury countered with baskets by Michela North and Kate Norton to tie the game at 6-6, forcing a Quincy timeout with 2:22 left in the quarter.
When the teams came back on the court, Sullivan had inserted Christina Curley into the lineup and the junior scored immediately for an 8-6 lead.
Lowry continued to assault the basket, but this time it was from 3-point land and it gave the visitors a 9-8 lead with fewer than two minutes to go.
North and junior Bridget Quilty would score the final five points of the quarter to give Duxbury a 13-11 lead after the first eight minutes.
After Lowry dominated the Quincy offense in the first quarter, she stepped aside for 5’11” senior Kiley McDonald, who took over for the Presidents in the second quarter and scored 15 of her team’s 17 points while building a 28-19 halftime lead.
“We were losing just about all of the 50/50 balls in that first half,” said Sullivan. “That comes from hard work and wanting the ball more than the players on the other team. We need to work on that. I want to be more aggressive and I’m not going to change that in a day. We have to be more aggressive. A couple of times balls dropped between four white shirts and we told the kids they can’t expect their teammate to get it.”
Having been outscored by a 17-6 margin in the second quarter, the Lady Dragons hoped to dig in on defense in the second half to get back in the game.
After Quilty opened the scoring to narrow the gap to seven, McDonald buried two more shots to get the lead up to 11 at 32-21. A North hoop kept the lead in single digits at 32-23, but Julia Tomer, Lowry (3), and McDonald combined for seven points in the final two minutes of the quarter for a 39-23 lead with a quarter left to play.
The Lady Dragons came
to life in the final quarter, as North erupted for two quick scores to cut the lead to 12. Lowry ended the brief Duxbury run with a basket, but the hosts ran off eight straight points with Norton (5), Catherine Harrison (FT), and captain Shannon McLaughlin (2) scoring to force a Quincy timeout with just a six-point lead at 41-35 with 3:15 remaining.
Duxbury would miss a crucial bucket in close with three minutes to go, sending Quincy down the other end where they iced the game with three points by senior Nicole Lamie for the win.
“I’m not disappointed,” said Sullivan. “These are good kids that work hard. We just need to get better.”
North led the team in scoring with 13 points, while Norton chipped in with 11.
McDonald was Quincy’s high scorer with 19 points and Lowry added 14.
The girls will travel to Easton on Thursday night when they tackle Oliver Ames at 7 p.m.