Division 3 girls EMass final

Archbishop Williams rebounds against Pentucket

Olivia Conrad helped Archbishop Williams dominate play inside, here blocking a shot by Pentucket’s Nicole Viselli.
Matthew J. Lee/Globe Staff
Olivia Conrad helped Archbishop Williams dominate play inside, here blocking a shot by Pentucket’s Nicole Viselli.

Three years ago, Pentucket and Archbishop Williams met at the TD Garden in the Division 3 girls’ basketball championship game, and the Sachems left holding the trophy.

Monday, the teams met again, and this time it was a different result.

Second-ranked Archbishop Williams gained a bit of revenge, turning up the defensive pressure to defeat defending champion Pentucket, 52-38, on the parquet.


“We try to wear down the other teams, [but] especially this time of the year teams are tough to wear down because they know if they lose that’s it,” Archbishop Williams coach Jim Bancroft said.

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“They suck it up, they play through it. But I think the consistent defensive intensity from the beginning, I think it actually did start wearing them down in the fourth quarter.”

The Archies (22-5) held Pentucket to 4 points in the third quarter and then began to pull away, taking a 47-36 lead on a Leah Spencer bank shot in the final period.

Archbishop Williams built an 8-2 lead in the first quarter, but Pentucket (24-2) fought back to to take a 9-8 lead on a pair of free throws by Tess Nogueira (8 points). The Archies responded with a 10-0 run, capped by a Jaylen Williams layup at the buzzer that gave them an 18-9 lead.

Pentucket stormed back again, opening the second quarter on a 7-2 run to cut the deficit to 20-16. The Archies led, 26-21, at halftime.


The Archies’ size was too much for Pentucket as they won the rebounding battle, 46-20.

“We knew we had to limit their second-shot attempts,” Bancroft said.

“During the year we usually get a ton of rebounds, but we’ve had a tendency of giving up a ton of rebounds by not blocking out. And I just told them, ‘If you want to win this game, you’ve got to box out, you’ve got to get a body, and then you’ve got to attack the ball.’ ”

Sophomore forward Alana Gilmer led the Archies with a game-high 12 points.

“I’m so proud of [my teammates],” said senior guard Sara Ryan, who struggled from the field. “They work so hard in practice and they really deserve it. They deserve this so much more than I do.”


Pentucket senior Nicole Viselli, the Cape Ann League MVP, suffered an ankle injury in the second quarter and was never able to get into a rhythm. She finished with 3 points.