Tag Archives: Samnell Vonleh

Last-minute rally gets Whittier past Newburyport 57-51

Lilly Donovan guards Andrea Terranova (16 points)

Lilly Donovan guards Andrea Terranova (16 points)

Emily Pettigrew (21 points) shoots over 6-3 Samnell Vonleh

Emily Pettigrew (21 points) shoots over 6-3 Samnell Vonleh

(Newburyport MA) The Whittier Tech girls had ten-point runs in both halves and defeated Newburyport, 57-51, on Monday afternoon in non-league action.

The second ten-point streak happened in the final minute and enabled WT to overcome a four-point deficit and pull out a victory.

The Wildcats (7-2) had only two three’s in the first three quarters but connected on two straight (Andrea Terranova & Michaela Martin) in the last minute to jump ahead, 53-51, with thirty-two seconds left.

Andrea (16 points) and Michaela (16 points) closed things out with four consecutive free throws.

At the same time everything was going right for the visitors from Haverhill, the home-team Clippers (9-3) will do best to forget what happened when they had the ball in the last minute.

After Whittier’s first three, the Clippers still had a one-point lead (51-50).  However, Aly Leahy missed the front end of a one-and-one in the possession before WT’s second three gave them the lead with 32 seconds left.

Down by only two (53-51), again with plenty of time to score, the Clippers turned the ball over in the backcourt and fouled the stealer (Andrea Terranova).  Andrea made both free throws.

Samnell Vonleh ready to block Abbie Bresnahan in the last minute

Samnell Vonleh ready to block Abbie Bresnahan in the last minute

Now down four (55-51), Abbie Bresnahan had a shot blocked out-of-bounds by 6-3 Samnell Vonleh.  Still time left, Emily Pettigrew traveled.  The Clippers were forced to foul and Michaela Martin finished things with two free throws.

The loss diminished the glow of a terrific performance by Newburyport’s Emily Pettigrew.  The 6-foot sophomore tallied twenty-one points and seemed unfazed by WT’s size and physical play.

The Clippers built up a ten-point lead (21-11) 1 1/2 minutes into the second quarter.  Some of that success for Newburyport was the way Mary Pettigrew kept the Wildcats Michaela Martin in check.

Trailing by ten, Whittier put their first ten-point run together.  Two free throws by Andrea Terranova helped but the real damage was done by junior Kayla Riley notching two layups, a free throw, and a three to tie the score at 21-21 three minutes before the half.

Newburyport had five turnovers and missed the front end of a one-and-one during this segment.

Aly Leahy (13 points) tries to steal from Dominque Ortiz as NHS coach Gregg Dollas watches

Aly Leahy (13 points) tries to steal from Dominque Ortiz as NHS coach Gregg Dollas watches

It was the Clippers’ turn to put points together in the third quarter after trailing, 31-27.  A nine-point streak featured an old-fashioned three by Abbie Bresnahan (9 points) and a normal three by Aly Leahy (13 points).  This collection of points put Newburyport ahead, 36-31, with a minute left in the third quarter.

The Clippers were able to hold onto the lead until the final minute of the game.

Both teams pressed and pressured wherever the ball was.  Neither team was very successful, as a result, in getting clean looks.  The usual result was a shot in traffic or a turnover.

rebound action

rebound action

The two teams combined for an unspectacular FIFTY turnovers.  Newburyport had 27 and Whittier 23, by my unofficial count.

Both teams missed seven free throws.  WT, however, connected twenty-three times including seven-of-eight in the final minute.  The Clippers hit nine free throws.

I was impressed by the speed and spark of sophomore Abbie Bresnahan.

Whittier has now won four straight.  They were 22-2 last season, losing in the Division 4 North final.  It is not hard to imagine the Wildcats doing well in the state tournament again this year.

The Clippers will have to wait another day to qualify for the state tournament.  They need one more win to get there.  They are scheduled to face Amesbury on Friday night (7PM) in their next game.

Whittier is scheduled to host non-league Gloucester on Wednesday (5:30PM).

Michaela Martin (16 points)

Michaela Martin (16 points)

Michaela Martin was a Lawrence Eagle Tribune All-Star last season.

Juniors Kayla Riley, Andrea Terranova, and Samnell Vonleh were Commonwealth Athletic Conference All-Stars in 2012-13.

WT has no seniors on their roster.

Whittier box

Newburyport box

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Kayla Riley (13 points) sees an opening

Kayla Riley (13 points) sees an opening

Abbie Bresnahan drives on Andrea Terranova

Abbie Bresnahan drives on Andrea Terranova

Plenty of defenders around Emily Pettigrew

Plenty of defenders around Emily Pettigrew

Aly Leahy lines up a free throw

Aly Leahy lines up a free throw

Aly Leahy double teamed

Aly Leahy double teamed

Morgan Johnston eyes the hoop

Morgan Johnston eyes the hoop

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Undefeated Whittier wins easily over Greater Lowell 70-40 in girls basketball

Michaela Martin (24 points) gets in close as Catherine Sweeney tries to avoid fouling

Michaela Martin (24 points) gets in close as Catherine Sweeney tries to avoid fouling

Andrea Terranova (8 points) looks for an opening

Andrea Terranova (8 points) looks for an opening

(Haverhill)  Undefeated Whittier was terrific on both ends of the court and gained its fifteen win routing Greater Lowell, 70-40, in Commonwealth Conference action on Tuesday night.

Whittier has two losses on their record but those were exclusion games (don’t count in the standings) with Division 1 Brockton.

The way this game went was a big surprise because in an earlier meeting in January, the Wildcats (15-0) needed a strong final quarter to get a, 53-47, win.

This time any doubts about the outcome were settled by halftime as the home team led, 36-18.

The Gryphons (13-4) had serious trouble with the Whittier pressure from beginning to end.  I counted thirty-six turnovers against the visitors from Tyngsboro.  Seven of those mishandles were turned into instant layups.

Kayla Riley tries to split the Greater Lowell defense

Kayla Riley tries to split the Greater Lowell defense

The Wildcats were willing and able to use their speed on almost every possession.  They broke out after rebounding and many times outnumbered the defending Gryphons as a result.

Trying to play catch-up defense led to many GL fouls.  The Gryphons leading scorer, Catherine Sweeney, was a foul magnet and ended up playing very few minutes in the first half.

Greater Lowell, despite six turnovers, was in front, 5-4, in the first four minutes.  The rest of the first quarter, however,  was all Whittier as they went on a 10-2 run.

Sophomore Michaela Martin (24 points) turned two steals into baskets and also had a free throw during the surge.  The Wildcats led, 17-7, after a quarter.

Whittier’s advantage was, 30-18, with three minutes to go in the second quarter.  The Wildcats then did all of the scoring (six points) the rest of the quarter to extend their lead to, 36-18.  A successful jump shot by Samnell Vonleh (12 points) and two more layups for Michaela Martin produced the six points.

Taylor Sweeney (17 points)

Taylor Sweeney (17 points)

Taylor Sweeney (17 points) tallied eleven of her points in the first half for Greater Lowell.

The Gryphons had thirteen turnovers in the third quarter and their deficit reached twenty-six (54-26).

Kiana Guadaloupa connected on consecutive three’s in the final quarter.

Both teams are in Division 4.  It would be easy to see Whittier as one of the top D4 seeds in the post-season tournament.

I covered Whittier’s home loss in the first round last season to Georgetown.

The speed of Whittier was impressive.

The Wildcats have one senior (Jose Sanchez).  Most of the Whittier point producers were sophomores.

Samnell Vonleh (12 points) defended by Catherine Sweeney

Samnell Vonleh (12 points) defended by Catherine Sweeney

Sophomore Samnell Vonleh (6’4”) is developing a touch around the basket.  She can already rebound and block shots.  I saw her brother (Noah) play for New Hampton Prep in their win at Brewster Academy.  Noah has committed to Indiana.

Greater Lowell has now lost two straight.  They had a seven-game winning streak before the losses.

Whittier coach Kevin Bradley did the pre-game introductions.

Whittier box score

Greater Lowell box score

(All of the pictures above and below enlarge if you click on them.)

Kiana Guadaloupa hit consecutive long shots

Kiana Guadaloupa hit consecutive long shots

Kayla Riley shoots in traffic

Kayla Riley shoots in traffic

Amanda Gage gets two

Amanda Gage gets two

Samantha Som breaks in

Samantha Som breaks in

Greater Lowell coach Brian Martin

Greater Lowell coach Brian Martin

Michaela Martin and Amanda Gage

Michaela Martin and Amanda Gage

 

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