NH Gym Rats 8th Grade Girls entered the Northern Showdown with just eight players as one of the team, Regan Despres, was on a family vacation. In the first game on Saturday the Gym Rats played against Maine’s substantially taller YES team. Despite a height mismatch, the girls kept it a close game managing to score 6 points in the second half and ending this one with a loss 22-29.
In the second game against the Northeast Thunder, our girls, utilizing a full-court press right out of the gate, stifled the opposition. Kendall Chamberlain hit 2 three-pointers while Teagan Kirby, Mylie Aho and Gracey Wilkes had big contributions. Tess Chamberlin’s defensive play had a big impact on the game helping the girls win 42-22.
On Sunday the team played against the Spartans House of Hoops at their home court in Hampton, NH. It was a fantastic see-saw game with several lead changes. Bella Hayes directed the offense in the first half giving the Gym Rats a comfortable 6 point lead by half time. The second half proved to be the most exciting half the girls have played this season. The team, lead by Mylie Aho was not only a force on offense but defense as well, playing the entire court. In the last 5 minutes of the game, “squirrel” (Abbie Switzer) shut the Spartan guards down. With less than two minutes in the game, newcomer Emma Tenters hit a huge layup to put the team up by 5 points. The Spartans followed up with a quick basket of their own cutting the lead to 3. The Gym Rats were able to take 50 seconds off the clock before Teagan Kirby was fouled and made two clutch free throws returning the lead again to 5 with only 20 seconds left. A missed jump shot by the Spartans and another rebound by the Gym Rats sealed the exciting game for the win 38-33.