NEWPORT — The Orioles have been to the state championship 5 times in the last 9 years, winning three times and this year they appear to be ready for another deep run. Undefeated Conant (9-0) is just what Newport didn’t need as the banged up Tigers fell 70-44 on Monday.
Maddie Miller’s three pointer gave Newport a quick lead as the Tigers were matching the Conant intensity early. Elizabeth Gonyea’s three pointer capped a, 8-0 Conant run then the press resulted in 5 points in 30 seconds as Conant closed out the first quarter with a 23-15 lead.
“Those few seconds at the end of the first were demoralizing for us, we got down on ourselves a bit but we picked ourselves up and kept swinging,” said Newport’s Riely Skarin.
Conant doubled their lead by the half as they are lightning fast with quick hands, quick feet and a relentless appetite for rebounds. The Orioles knocked down 3 three pointers in the period as Teagan Kirby began to get hot and entered the locker room with a 39-24 gap.
“Every time we come to Newport they give us a test and tonight was no different, the game was much closer than the final score indicated and I’m just happy to be headed home with a win,” said Conant head coach Brian Troy.
Skarin and Miller started out the second half with hoops but Conant had an answer as the freshman Brynn Rautiola canned a shot from beyond the arc to keep the momentum on the visitors side. Greysan Beaulieu, Morgan Roberts and Skarin closed out the third quarter with a 6-0 Newport run but the gas tank was running on empty for Newport as they went the next 5 minutes without a hoop as Conant was pouring it on and cruised to a 70-44 win.
“We played a solid man to man defense all night and we played hard, no easy shots were given but Conant is one of the top if not the best team in the division,” said Newport head coach Ross Dole after the game.
Newport was led by Skarin’s 12 points while Beaulieu added 10 and Alexis Quimby chipped in with 7 points. Conant placed 5 players in double figures led by Gonyea’s 19 points and Kirby’s 16.
In JV action, a big Newport comeback fell just short as Conant edged the Tigers 30-25. Kelsey O’Connor and Alicia Urista each had 6 points for Newport.
Newport (1-5) will be getting some help next week as Alyssa Burr has been cleared to play for the first time all season when the Tigers host Stevens (3-3) at home next Tuesday for a 7:00 showdown.