KINGSTON – Using drives from guard Maggie Salomone to setup center Hannah Maymon, and transition layups from Chelsea Sahagian, the Narragansett Mariners distanced themselves from Prout in the second half en route to a 56-43 Division II girls’ basketball title win against Prout at the Ryan Center on Sunday afternoon.
Narragansett stretched a 28-20 halftime lead with a 21-8 run over the first eight minutes of the second half and never looked back. Over the final 7:13, the Mariners killed the clock and controlled the game via Salomone’s dribbling.
Prout didn’t have much of an answer for the speedy senior point guard. While she struggled a bit with her outside shot, not managing to hit a 3, she still finished with a game-high 16 points, and a surprising three blocks while playing in the low-post.
More importantly, Salomone found Maymon repeatedly for layups in te second half. After scoring just two points in the first half, Maymon added a dozen in the second, on layups setup by Salomone and three 10-foot jumpers.
When asked if she had ever scored 14 points in a game before, Maymon laughed and said, “Never in my life, ever,” adding that she normally just focused on defense.
Narragansett head coach Kathryn Mahoney said she was proud of Maymon and always thought she had that sort of game in her.
“I couldn’t be happier,” she said. “She’s got such an amazing touch for a post player.”
She added, “We’ve been telling her for four years, ‘You’ve got to shoot.’ … I don’t know what happened to her today, but she played great.”
Beyond Salomone and Maymon, the Mariners again got a dynamic performance from their sophomore duo of Chelsea Sahagian and Abby McKanna.
The two played well off each other, with Sahagian running the court for lay-ups off strong defensive plays by McKanna. Sahagian finished with 15 points and and a steal, while McKanna had seven points – all in the first half – four steals and a block.
Ali Castrovillari made up the fifth member of Narragansett’s starting five, who again played about 30 of the game’s 32 minutes. Castrovillari finished with just four points, but a 3 early in the second half forced a Prout timeout and keyed a Mariner run.
The Crusaders stayed with Narragansett for most of the first half thanks to defense, but struggled to hit their own open jumpers. Tori Jedson led the team with five points, and six other players had field goals.
However, Narragansett clamped down on defense in the second half. Maddie Hagerty, forced to play a bit soft on defense because of three fouls, led Prout with six second half points and finished with a team-high nine points.
More importantly, like every other team this year, Prout struggled to get easy buckets and turnovers against Narragansett. The Crusaders only had six steals, one of which came by a reserve well after the game was in hand. In contrast, Narragansett had more than a dozen.
Mahoney said that coming into the game, she thought her team would win, even thought Prout had pulled off two upsets and played great in the playoffs.
“They just had that fire,” Mahoney said of Narragansett. “I just had a great feeling that they wanted it.”
She added that practice between the semifinals and finals had gone very well.
“It was just a vibe, in practice they were really coming together well,” he said. “Developing chemistry and playing together, those things don’t necessarily come together easy.”
The title is the second-straight for Narragansett, although with a different cast of characters, after the Mariners lost Mercedes and Raquel Harris, Jackie Iannucci, Hannah Collier, Peaches Griffith and others to transfers and graduation.
“To lose the girls we lost last year and to come back was incredible,” Mahoney said.