Moral victory is about all the odds would offer Darien going into its game vs. the undefeated Hatters. And that is what the Wave came out with, as far as coach Katie Lauten was concerned, in Danbury on Tuesday night.
And while it’s tough to be on the losing end, I also see a lot of positives, and to treat this as a learning experience, not something to hang our heads about.
— Katie Lauten
“This was a total team effort,” Lauten said following the 51-44 loss to the 13-0, first-in-the-FCIAC hosts. “Losing is tough, but the girls kept their heads up the entire game, as we were never out of it.”
Darien (9-4) is in a three-way tie for sixth in the league, Ridgefield and Trinity behind it on tiebreakers for the moment.
“I am so proud with the heart we showed out on the court tonight,” Lauten added.
Double-doubling Meg Marren led Darien with 12 points and went 4-for-7 from the line, had 10 rebounds, four assists, one steal, three blocks.
Kate Bushell scored 10 points, had four rebounds, two assists, two steals, Emily Stein 10 points, landed two three’s, went 4-for-4 from the stripe, palmed five rebounds, made seven assists and one steal.
Hatter Rachel Gartner scored a game-high 16 points.
“I also give a lot of credit to Danbury,” Lauten said. “The atmosphere they create in that gym is pretty incredible.”
Plus, it was a special night.
“We happened to be there for Cancer Awareness Night and they do an amazing job getting people to come out and support the cause, as well as girls high school basketball,” Lauten said. “I’d love to see that type of energy and enthusiasm in every gym we play at. It’s certainly a reflection of their team, as the girls themselves are a hard-working, energetic crew.”
The hosts went ahead 13-11 after one period and did much damage in taking a 29-18 lead at the half.
The Wave rallied but was edged 13-12 in the third period, and made a stab at it outscoring Danbury 14-9 in the fourth.
Freshman Erin Karczewski scored seven points and had five rebounds, an assist and a steal, while Kelly Karczewski added five points, had five rebounds and two steals.
Kate Fiore copped a steal and contributed much more than that.
“Both teams tonight did a fantastic job,” Lauten, coaching her first varsity high school team, said. “And while it’s tough to be on the losing end, I also see a lot of positives, and to treat this as a learning experience, not something to hang our heads about.”