GREENWICH — With Katie Ramsay flourishing inside, Lindsay Dimonekas excelling on the fastbreak and Christine Fiore scoring from all areas of the court, the Darien High School girls basketball team was indeed difficult to defend during its game against Greenwich Thursday night.
The trio sparked a pivotal second-quarter run and a huge third quarter that catapulted their team to its second win of the young season.
Ramsay scored a game-high 26 points, Fiore was right behind her with 24 points and Dimonekas added 13 for Darien, which rolled to a resounding 83-34 win over host Greenwich in an FCIAC matchup.
The victory evened Darien’s record to 2-2. The Cardinals have a 1-2 mark.
“Our strategy was to press them and play with high intensity the whole game,” Ramsay said. “As soon as we got our press going and began to press them all over the place, they became frazzled and started committing turnovers.”
Ignited by Ramsey’s 15 points, the Blue Wave entered halftime with a 39-22 lead. Fiore, a forward, had 10 first-half points, while Dimonekas, a guard, had eight for Darien. Senior guard Kim Kockenmeister had 13 points, while senior forward Beth Williamson scored nine for GHS.
“Today I think, could be a breakthrough game for us,” said Fiore, a senior forward. “This is the most points that our team has ever scored I think, or it’s the most points we scored in a while. This could give us momentum going forward for the rest of the season.”
A 12-0 run gave Darien a 24-15 second-quarter lead. Ramsay, a senior center, made a layup off a steal and converted two free throws, then Fiore scored off a steal, giving the visitors a 20-15 edge midway through the second quarter.
Dimonekas’ layup off a GHS turnover and Ramsay’s basket in the low post put Darien on top, 24-15, at the 3:10 mark of the third quarter.
Forward Tess Lamhaouar brought the Cardinals to within 24-18 with a 3-pointer, but the Blue Wave ended the first half with a 15-5 run.
Ramsay scored five points during the spurt, while Fiore had six. Consecutive baskets by Fiore put Darien ahead, 39-22, heading into halftime.
“They had a definite size advantage on us, which was a big factor for them,” GHS coach Chrys Hernandez said. “We didn’t make the best choices with our passes. But their size advantage resulted in them getting deflections, blocked shots and steals. We didn’t make adjustments quickly enough.”
Outscoring Greenwich 11-1 the first three minutes of the third quarter, Darien extended it’s edge to 50-24.
Greenwich started the game well, taking an 8-2 lead behind four points from Kockenmeister and two each from Lamhaouar and Taylor Stamos. But the Blue Wave, which played a box-and-one defense to slow Kockenmeister down, slowly gained the momentum with their defensive intensity and offensive execution. The score was tied at 12-12 after the first quarter, before the Blue Wave pulled away in the second. The Blue Wave also utilized a full court press after the scored.
“We know (Kockenmeister) is a great player, so we tried our best to disrupt their offense and force them to go to other options,” said Darien assistant coach Michael Hanley, who along with Ian Bossert, ran the team in the absence of head coach Melba Chambers. “Katie and Christina are tough players to defend. We felt we could force some problems with our press.”
Said Hernandez: “Kim is one of our best scorers, so their defense did cause us problems,” Hernandez said. “She is one of our go-to players, so it took us out of it mentally, a little bit.”
Guard Rachel Stobbie contributed seven points for the victors.
PLAYER OF THE GAME
Ramsay scored 18 of her game-high 26 points in the first half for the Blue Wave.
“We all played so well offensively,” Ramsay said. “This is the first time that we scored that much. We passed the ball well and executed.”