Girls basketball: Run for Charhio ends in state quarterfinals to No. 1 seed Barrington

The matchup at the Community College of Rhode Island during Monday night’s RIIL girls basketball state tournament quarterfinal, Keira Frias, Jules White, and Megan Ballard showcased their prowess with successful 3-pointers, steering Chariho to an early lead that endured throughout most of the initial quarter against the top-seeded Barrington.

After a lay-up executed by Isys Dunphy in the waning moments shifted the score in Barrington’s favor at 19-17 at the close of the first quarter, Brianna DeGiacomo swiftly reinstated the Chargers’ lead, edging them ahead at 20-19 in the opening minute of the second quarter.

However, those proved to be the concluding points for Chariho over the ensuing six minutes.

Barrington (20-7) seized command, propelled by their defensive prowess, initiating an 11-0 surge while compelling seven turnovers. The Division I champions, under Dunphy’s leadership with a notable 20-point contribution, concluded the first half with a formidable 31-21 lead and eventually secured a commanding 62-41 triumph over Chariho (19-7).

Coach Dan LaBelle of Chariho reflected, stating, “We commenced the game with tremendous offensive vigor, adeptly handling their defensive pressure and scoring adeptly both from the interior and the perimeter. However, our downfall stemmed from offensive rebounds. Initially, we failed to adequately curtail their opportunities for second chances.”

He continued, “As the second quarter unfolded, Barrington adeptly coerced us into errors. Nevertheless, some of those blunders were a result of our own lapses, as we failed to safeguard the basketball adequately against a team of such caliber.”

Chariho initiated the third quarter with a burst, notching the first four points – courtesy of baskets by White and Emily Ballard – narrowing the gap to a mere six points (31-25). Yet, Dunphy swiftly shifted the momentum with consecutive field goals. The latter, stemming from a steal, culminated in a lay-up plus a successful foul shot, reinstating a double-digit lead at 36-25.

Frias led Chariho with a tally of nine points, complemented by White’s seven. Emily Ballard contributed six, with Erin O’Leary and Megan Ballard each notching five.

Janaya Prince-Baquero, on the Eagles’ side, concluded with 13 points, including a significant milestone of her 1,000th career point achieved with a lay-up in the second quarter.

Barrington progresses to face Bay View, securing a narrow 44-43 victory over Ponaganset, in the upcoming Saturday’s semifinals at the University of Rhode Island’s Ryan Center at 1 p.m.

Reflecting on Chariho’s season, Coach LaBelle expressed, “It was a remarkable season for Chariho. The team clinched the WCCU Holiday Tournament in December, advanced to the Division II tournament semifinals, and concluded among the top eight teams in the state.”

He added, “Every individual displayed their utmost effort, playing with determination. As a coach, that is the pinnacle expectation. I am immensely proud of this team for the season we’ve had. It stands as one of the most distinguished in the Chariho program’s history, a testament to the players, the unwavering community support, and the tireless efforts of the coaching staff who provided invaluable assistance throughout the season.”

He concluded, “The girls have no reason to hang their heads. Winning 19 games throughout the season and being among the final eight in the state is an achievement they should hold in high regard.”

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