DALTON, Mass. -- The Wahconah girls basketball team Thursday earned a come from behind victory to grab a share of the Berkshire County North Division title.
Maria Gamberoni scored 20 points, and Wahconah got its eighth straight win with a 50-44 win over Pittsfield.
Things didn’t start off the way Wahconah (17-2) wanted. Its first five points were scored by Noelle Furlong, who less than two minutes into the game had to check out with two fouls. Meanwhile Pittsfield (10-9), was having some issues of its own struggling to keep control of the ball. Pittsfield was in the bonus with just less than a minute left in the first quarter but was unable to use that to its advantage. At the end of the first quarter it was a low scoring affair and a 13-9 lead for Wahconah.
The second half is where Pittsfield really started to get going. After a quick five points from Emery Sime, the Generals were able to take the lead. It was a sloppy second quarter for both teams, but Lexi Garvey started to find her groove scoring seven points in the quarter including a couple offensive rebounds for putbacks. The Generals ended the half on a 9-0 run keeping Wahconah scoreless in the last six minutes of the half. Pittsfield led 23-16 at the break.
Second half action looked like Pittsfield was finally going to run away with the game, pushing their largest lead of the game to 13 thanks to Garvey, who had all 11 points in the quarter on her way to a game-high 24.
After a shake up on the defensive end, Wahconah started to make their push stringing defensive stops and baskets on the other end together.
“We adjusted, and luckily they executed what I wanted them to do.” Wahconah coach Liz Kay said. “When you make a change you either look like an idiot as a coach or a genius and I guess tonight they made me look like a genius.”
Wahconah was able to close the quarter out only down by six points and in striking distance for the fourth. The game really started to look like it was going to be Wahconah’s night after a 3-pointer from Victoria Gamberoni and then a steal from her sister Maria on the ensuing inbounds for two points to bring them within two points. They eventually tied the game up at the line on Natasha Shade’s fifth foul. The defensive pressure started to pick up even more, and Wahconah started to smell blood.
“We moved Victoria [Gamberoni] in spots she could be more successful,” Kay said. “That’s on me for the first half, so she did a tremendous job and obviously her defensive effort was tremendous."
The next person to step up was Wahconah’s Jillian Cote, who drew a foul and the bucket to give her team its first lead since way back in the first half. Once it regained the lead it never looked back. A couple free throws late by Maria Gamberoni iced the game and gave Pittsfield its second loss in two days in similar fashion. Maria Gamberoni finished the night with 21 points, while Cote added 11.
Wahconah will enjoy this win as it gave them a share of the North title before finishing the regular season with a North-South crossover game against Mount Everett on Monday.
Pittsfield will take on Lenox on the same day in their crossover.