ARLINGTON — Nothing beats getting your first win of the season in front of your home crowd. In their home opener, the Arlington girls basketball team won beat Bellows Falls, 30-24, to secure their first win of the season.
Junior Riley Lane got things started for the Eagles, scoring the first four points of the game to give the Eagles an early lead.
"If I had a good look at the basket, I was going to shoot it," Lane said. "Our team had a slow start to begin our last game, so it was good to get the team off to a good start."
The rest of the first would prove to be an offensive struggle for both teams, as each couldn't stop turning the ball over.
"We took too many ill-advised shots and kept forcing things too much out there," said Arlington coach Larry Andrews. "Lucky for us though, our defensive play was outstanding all game and that kept us in the lead."
The score going to the half, after Bellows Falls guard Keri Ticinio hit a three at the buzzer, was Arlington ahead 12-10.
With an 18-15 lead going into the fourth quarter, Arlington began to pull away thanks to the outstanding play of senior Avery Bucchieri.
The Eagles captain scored six points in the final quarter to secure the win for Arlington. She would go on a four-point run herself midway through the fourth that gave the Eagles a eight point lead.
"We needed a win after losing last week in our season opener, so it was huge to hold on there at the end," Bucchieri said. "Can't beat winning in front of your home crowd either."
Even down eight with four minutes remaining, Bellows Falls didn't give up and made it a four point game with a minute remaining. That's where the Eagles defense came up huge again, forcing Bellows Falls to commit two crucial turnovers to end the game.
"Our defense played really well tonight," Andrews said. "We executed our zone defense to perfection tonight and used our length to our advantage too."
To end her last home opener as an Eagle, Bucchieri would knock down two free throws to end her night with a Arlington team-high eight points and seal the deal for the Eagles.
"It was a great win and it was a night that I will not forget," said Bucchieri. "Hopefully there are more of those to come this season."
The Eagles will play go on the road in their next two games over the weekend. Their next game will be against Green Mountain on Friday at 7 p.m.