AUBURN, Mass. – It was the ugliest stretch of play for the Auburn girls basketball team all season, according to head coach Ellen Kaschuluk. But despite the poor first half, the Rockets were too much for the Uxbridge Spartans on Wednesday night in Auburn.
The Rockets pulled away in the second half, cruising to a 40-22 victory in Auburn’s first game of 2013. They are now 5-0 on the season, winning by double digits in each game.
“We got off to a horribly slow start,” Kaschuluk said. “We were slow and struggled, but luckily after halftime, we put it back to how we usually play, which is high intensity.
“It’s good that the poor play happened now,” she added. “Every team has those moments. This was ours, so we learn from it, build and move on.”
Even with the sub-par performance in the first half, the Rockets were leading 20-12 at halftime. The squad then exploded out of the locker room, going on a quick 6-0 run.
“That’s how you start a half,” Kaschuluk told her players when Uxbridge called a timeout.
Auburn led 32-18 at the end of the third quarter, had an 8-0 run to begin the final quarter and soared to a 40-22 victory. Sarah Palace paced the Rockets with 14 points. Other scoring contributors were Erin Scanlon with nine, Amber Abderrazzaq with six, Lyndsey Gabrielian with four, Jordann Hauge with three, Erin Burke with two and Natalia Khataga with two.
Gabrielian led the team with six blocks on the night, a regular feat by the point guard.
“She has about five or six blocks per game,” Kaschuluk said. “She’s got those long arms. As a point guard, one of her best assets is where she is on defense. She positions herself really well, and it’s been really helpful for us.”
Boys Basketball Perseveres In Overtime
Without senior forward Tyler Lamonda, the Rockets were pushed to a tough overtime road battle against Uxbridge. But Auburn survived, winning 63-56 and moving to 5-1 on the season.
The Rockets were ahead 31-20 at halftime, but the Spartans battled back and made it 42-39 at the end of the third quarter. With neither team able to break a 49-all tie at the end of regulation, the first game of 2013 went to overtime. Junior forward DJ Scavone scored seven points and helped the Rockets pull away.
Scavone led the team with 21 points on the night. Senior forward Tyler Simmons had nine points and 17 rebounds, sophomore guard Mark Wright had 14 and junior guard Mike Thomas had 10.