Mercymount girls lose in regionals

Mercymount girls lose in regionals

CUMBERLAND - They kept it close early, but in the end, the Rhode Island Catholic Athletic League 8th Grade state champions fell, 42-33, to Sts. Peter and Paul of Hartford, Conn., in the opening round of the New England Regionals during the weekend.

It was a defensive battle initially, and at half, the game was tied 20-20.

Mercymount forced constant turnovers and SSPP had to rely on perimeter shooting because Mercymount collapsed in a zone to prevent SSPP's highest scorer from producing in the paint.

Mercymount ran the floor offensively for a quick-paced game right up to the end. They were able to break the press consistently and moved the ball well on offense.

It remained close throughout, and with three minutes remaining, Mercymount trailed by a deuce. But down the stretch, SSPP nailed a three-pointer and then broke loose for a pair of uncontested layups to take the win.

"Although Mercymount players could not salvage the win in the first round of playoffs, they showed their talent, intensity and sportsmanship throughput the entire game," said head coach Kim McLaughlin. "In addition, this team has been working all year to prepare for the challenges we would face in the New England Tournament. After an undefeated season we worked in many scrimmages against tough competition to help us get stronger."

Mercymount completed its regular season undefeated and clinched its third consecutive Division 1 state title with a win over Father John V. Doyle School of Coventry in the championship game in March.

The team was also the 2013 Mass Premier Summer League champions in their division and The 2013 St. James Christmas Tournament Champions.

"Falling in the first round happens to many of the best teams at all levels," said McLaughlin. "On a different day, with a few of the close ones falling in, our girls were prepared and competitive enough to have given any team in the bracket a run. It has been a privilege to coach this team through the last five years. We have had many successes, I couldn't be more proud of them."

Team members are Jackie Arminio, Lizzie Cadden, Caroline Costa, Brooke Lynn Forcier, Rachel Marinella, Erin McLaughlin, Ashley Nadeau, Arianna Ober, Ali Ready, Jessica Reis, Talia Volpicelli, Abby Wunderlich, coach McLaughlin, assistant coach Lisa Cadden and assistant coach Kellie Volpicelli.