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Freshman Emily Jelden looks past Akron defender Kaylee Traxler during Saturday’s home game. The 43-32 win bumps the Lady Dragon overall record to 11-3. —Johnson Publications photo

Despite week of illness, girls compete hard against Akron

    “I like our fight, our effort and our toughness,” said coach John Baumgartner following a 43-32 win over Akron Saturday, Feb. 4, in Holyoke.
    It’s been a while since the Lady Dragon varsity basketball team has put up much of a fight against the Rams, he said. “We held our own.”
    The game came after a rough week of illness at Holyoke High School, taking girls away from practices. School was even canceled Friday, Feb. 3, and that night’s game with Wiggins was postponed to this Saturday.
    The varsity coach said he wasn’t sure what to expect on the court on Saturday, but he was proud of how the girls played and the shots they were able to get into the basket. “We started slow, but I liked the way we finished,” he said. “Everybody who stepped on the floor contributed.”
    Baumgartner said the Dragons shut Akron down at the 3-point line, something that’s usually a strength for them. While the Rams only made one 3-pointer, they put up an impressive 13 out of 18 free throws. “We gotta keep them off the free-throw line,” said Baumgartner.
    Saturday’s game brings Holyoke’s record to 11-3 overall and 3-1 in league standings.
    “It’s good to have the community excited about girls basketball again,” said Baumgartner, noting the positive cheers and encouraging attitude he’s seen from the Dragon crowd this year.

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