The Coginchaug girls played two games last week, at North Branford on Tuesday the 29th, and at Valley on Thursday the 31st. After a bit of scare early against the Thunderbirds of North Branford, where the Devils trailed into the third period, and a more serious scare at the end of the game, when Morgan Kuehnle was taken down from behind in an intentional foul, that proved to be “only” five stitches on her chin, after most of the fans and coaches feared much worse, Coginchaug pulled away for two relatively easy wins.
vs. North Branford
For the first half in the North Branford game, the Devils could not seem to get on track, as they trailed 8-9 after one period and 13-17 at the half. However, early in the second half, they put on a 16-0 run, with two free throws from Morgan Kuehnle putting them on top for good, and with both Olivia Corazzini and Kim Romanoff contributing both a two and a three during the run, and Audrey Arcari dropping in two three’s for the period, resulting in a 32-22 lead entering the final period.
That final period saw a closer competition between the two teams, but the Thunderbirds were never able to get closer than eight, at 35-27, before the Devils put it away with a 5-0 run. The game ended with a big scare for Blue Devil fans, as Morgan fell to the floor after the intention foul with a loud crack that silenced the crowd. Many feared that she had landed on her elbow, and the crack was a bone breaking, but fortunately (though I’m not sure that Morgan would agree that it was fortunate – she was in lots of pain) was her chin breaking her fall. After about a ten minute pause to tend to Morgan and get her on her way for medical attention, plus clean the blood off of the floor, the North Branford coach waved off the last 55 seconds of the game, as Coginchaug took a 43-31 victory.
Kim Romanoff led the Devils with 13 points, and also in steals with seven. Morgan led the team in rebounding with nine and assists with four, also stealing the ball four times and blocking shots twice. Audrey Arcari scored nine, and grabbed four rebounds. Jessica Solomon scored seven points and added six rebounds, while Olivia Corazzini scored five.
Off the bench, Naomi Rinaldo scored two, and Mikayla Wyskiel score one point.
vs. Valley Regional
The Valley game on Thursday was highlighted by Morgan’s return to the court with a bandaged chin – with apparently no impact on her willingness to play hard. The Devils jumped out to leads of 16-2 after one period, 27-13 at the half, and led 35-13 three minutes into the second half when Coach Rett Mancinelli let the bench players take over for the rest of the period, resulting in an even score for the rest of the period, and a 39-17 lead after three periods.
The starters stretched the lead to as much as 45-19, with Morgan scoring all of the Blue Devil points, before the bench was cleared. The Valley mini-run at the end was meaningless, and Amy Arcari did manage to get the bench on the board, as she scored off of an Alana Beckert assist at the end of the game, which made the final score 47-28, with the Devils on top.
Morgan Kuehnle proved what a tough player she is by leading the team in scoring with 15, and in rebounding with nine despite having stitches in her chin, a couple of taped fingers, and an impressive looking blue bandage-looking thing on one arm. I’m not sure what it’s for, but it looks kind of cool. Kim Romanoff scored eight points, adding seven rebounds, four steals and three assists. Jessica Solomon pulled in seven rebounds, also scoring four points and blocking a shot. Olivia Corazzini scored six and grabbed five boards, while Audrey Arcari pulled in six rebounds and scored two points.
Off the bench, Caryn Sibiskie had an impressive rebounding performance with seven, and scored two. Sydney Trusty scored four points and added two rebounds. Mikayla Wyskiel stole the ball three times and grabbed two rebounds, while Larissa Cade, Naomi Rinaldo and Amy Arcari each scored two points.
Coginchaug is 13-4, 12-3 (fourth place) in the Shoreline conference. They have big games this week, on Monday at 8-7 (fifth place) Old Saybrook and on Thursday at home against 14-0 (first place) Cromwell.
On Monday the 11th, they will travel to 12-3 (third place) Morgan, and on Wednesday the 13th, they will host 12-3 (second place) H-K, all of these being key Shoreline conference contest against competitive teams. Try to get out and root for the girls in these important Shoreline conference games!