Original Story: The Fairfield-Warde Mustangs and Staples Wreckers are in the thick of the FCIAC girls basketball playoff hunt and the two teams will continue their battle for a tournament spot when they clash at Staples High School on Thursday night.
The action will be carried live by the HAN Network with a pregame show at 6:50 p.m. and tip-off at 7 p.m. You can watch the game on the FCIAC’s home page and on HAN.Network, or on Frontier Communications’ Vantage Sports Network (Chs. 600/1600). Frank Granito and Kevin Coleman will be on the call.
It’s the second meeting of the season between Warde and Staples, who also clahsed in the Todd Burger Holiday Tournament final on Dec. 28. Staples took home the title with a 57-52 victory.
Warde (10-2 overall, 7-1 in the FCIAC) enters Thursday night’s contest sitting third in the FCIAC behind Norwalk and Trumbull, with all three of those teams having suffered one loss in the conference.
Warde Head Coach Dave Danko retooled his roster after losing key players from last year’s team, which advanced to the conference semifinals. Danko continues to be successful by bringing in young talent year-in and year-out and emphasizing strong team defense.
The Warde Mustangs are led by senior captains Libby Mckenna and Olivia Parisi, who have been dominant on both sides of the floor this year. Mckenna and Parisi have been great leaders, both on and off the floor, to a roster filled with underclassmen with a bright future with the program.
Staples has reached the halfway point of the season 8-2 in the conference, 10-3 overall. The Wreckers have improved in a big way in just one year, after they finished last season 9-7.
The Wreckers have a well-balanced roster that features seniors with strong leadership abilities, juniors and sophomores that are becoming big name playmakers, and freshmen who are gaining excellent varsity experience.
Junior Ellie Fair and sophomore Arianna Gerig have made names for themselves as they have both been dominant on both sides of the floor.
Head coach Paco Fabian has his team focused and ready to make the final push as a postseason berth.