Complete Game For Mounties in Barrett's Senior Night Return
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- The most prolific scorer in the history of the Mount Greylock girls basketball team is back, and she rejoins a better team than the one she left.
Lucy Barrett scored 12 points in her first game back since suffering an ankle injury on Feb. 4, and the Mounties beat Mount Everett, 60-42, on Senior Night in the Mountie Dome.
Barrett announced her return with a 3-pointer from the left-wing in the game's first minute, and she added two more field goals in the first quarter before her coach and father could get her out of the game.
But in a fitting reminder of what the Mounties accomplished the last two weeks without Barrett in the lineup, she was not the team's leading scorer. Arianna Walden led four Mounties in double figures with 13 points as Mount Greylock continued a 4-0 run to close the regular season -- 5-0 with Wednesday's forfeit by St. Joseph.
"Playing the last three games without her made everyone else realize they have to be a lot more confident in their shooting," said Kelsey Orpin, Mount Greylock's only other senior and Barrett's co-captain. "When she came out there, we obviously still looked to her a lot, but we were still taking those shots from the confidence we got from the other games."
Mount Everett coach Scott Rote, whose team lost 63-48 to a full-strength Mount Greylock back on Jan. 13, agreed that this version of the Mounties is stronger for the experience of the last two weeks.
"I think what it was when Lucy was hurt for them they learned how to move the ball better and use [Jenna] Benzinger a lot more," Rote said, referring to Mount Greylock's sophomore center. "She's tough. It's hard to take 5-8, 5-9 and defend 6-4. Even on misses, she scan clean up the boards pretty well.
"Coming into here, we didn't know what to expect, whether Lucy was going to play or not, but she looked fine."
Mount Greylock coach Paul Barrett as recently as Tuesday said only that his daughter would be "in uniform" for Senior Night with a berth in the Western Mass tournament in hand for the Mounties (11-9).
On Thursday night, he was keeping a very close eye on No. 15.
"She handled all the cuts and everything else," Barrett said. "As a dad, as well, I was looking at everything, and originally my plan was to only have her for introductions, but she definitely looked like she felt good in introductions and everything else. So I went went with that -- against my better judgment -- but I'm happy for her because it was killing her not playing.
"Through it all, I was trying to convince her it's about the tournament. But it was nice. She brought some energy, and they really came together as a team."
Lucy Barrett, who has been playing varsity basketball since the eighth grade, said the
"It's definitely a different feeling," she said. "I think it almost got harder when I could walk again. When I was on crutches, I knew I wasn't able to be out there. But once I was off those, I was like, 'Oh, I can walk again. I want to get out and play.'
"I thought it was a very good experience to have, although obviously I wish I didn't have it. Just being there for my teammates and showing that even when I wasn't on the court and even when the worst thing I could imagine happening happened to me, I was still going to be there for them, still going to cheer them on and encourage them and help them through those games."
And her teammatese helped Barrett by winning three games without her to win the Berkshire County Soutbern Division and make sure Barrett got to play in next week's Division 3 tourney -- whether or not her ankle was strong enough for Senior Night.
"They all stepped up, each and every one of them," she said. "Girls who weren't scoring as much started scoring. I'm just really proud of what they did when I wasn't out there. Girls who are going to have to be leaders next year were stepping up, and I'm very proud of them."
After Barrett departed the game for the first time with 5 minutes, 2 seconds left in the first quarter, Benzinger put back offensive rebounds on back-to-back trips to open up a 12-3 lead for the Mounties.
The Eagles rallied back to within five on Emily Coon's drive from the right wing to make it 12-7 late in the quarter.
But the Mounties opened the second with an 11-2 spurt to push their lead to 25-10, and Mount Everett (13-7) never got back within single digits the rest of the way.
Benzinger finished with 19 rebounds to go with 10 points. Sarah Stripp scored 10 with 11 rebounds and three assists. Orpin had four assists. Lauren Howard played a strong game off the bench with five points and six rebounds, and all 10 Mounties in uniform got in the scoring column.
Gwendolyn Carpenter led Mount Everett with 13 points. Parker Snyder scored nine with 10 rebounds. Kayla Krom grabbed nine rebounds, and Coon, who was hampered by foul trouble, finished with just four points.
Rote said the Eagles, who closed on a 4-2 run, are in good shape heading into the tournament next week.
"We hoped we could come out with the energy we had [Wednesady] night against Lenox," Rote said, referring to a 57-18 win over the Millionaires. "They kids played with a lot of heart and energy, and I think it took a lot out of them last night. And Greylock's tough.
"I liked our second half effort [aganst Mount Greylock]. Coming out of half-time, our energy wasn't good, but the second half of the third period and the fourth period, the energy came up. We play better when we play fast. Emily getting into foul trouble hurt us. Kelsey Netzer's shot wasn't there. When Kelsey [six points] gets hot, look out.
"Based on what we did last night and the teams we're going to see in the [Division 4] tournament -- we're not going to see, other than Hopkins or a couple, teams like this. Greylock's good. I wish them well in the tournament."