Girls hoop: Ridgefield ends slide with win over Cadets

After a string of dispiriting losses, the Ridgefield High girls basketball team regrouped to beat St. Joseph on Tuesday night at home.

It wasn't easy, though.

Despite entering with just five wins in its first 16 games, St. Joseph gave the Tigers a battle. Although it opened the contest with a 9-0 run, Ridgefield had slim leads at halftime (33-30) and after three quarters (40-38), and was ahead by just four points, 49-45, with 2:49 to play.

Megan Klosowski hit two free throws to extend Ridgefield's lead to 51-45 before a St. Joseph basket made it a four-point game with 44 seconds remaining. But the Tigers scored the final three points, getting a free throw from Isabella Giordano and a layup from Faith Arnold to close out the 54-47 victory.

“We went the distance, but the process and technical details were disconnected,” said Ridgefield head coach Tom DiMarzo, whose team ended a three-game losing streak. “We came off of a choppy week where we beat ourselves ... I think tonight we were mentally smarter, but we still have room for improvement in the games to come.”

The Tigers (11-6 overall) got a big effort from sophomore guard Kate Wagner, who hit two early three-pointers and finished with 16 points.

“I’ve always tried to lead by example and I knew that tonight after our [recent] setbacks that I had to do that more than ever,” said Wagner.

Also reaching double digits was fellow sophomore Megan Klosowski, who added 11 points.

“Megan played tremendously, both offensively and defensively, and I know that her determination to win was truly communicated in the second half,” said DiMarzo. “We replaced our quiet attitude of the first half with one of aggression, and it got us the game.”

Sabrina Grizzaffi added seven points for Ridgefield, followed by Caroline Curnal with six points and nine rebounds.

Arnold supplied four points and Giordano had three points. Katie Flynn and Kate Garson each had two points and Norah McNeece added one point.

Tessie Hynes and Elena Ball each scored 13 points to lead St. Joseph (5-12 overall), which kept the game close by hitting 72% of its free throws.