FREEDOM PLAINS – The saying goes, “Fake it ‘til you make it.”
It essentially means that one should hold firm to their aspirations — regardless of the reality — until it comes to fruition.
The Arlington High School girls basketball team insisted in December that this wasn’t a rebuilding campaign, that it eventually would be molded into a contender. With a brutal non-league schedule and a roster finding its way, the Admirals said, January would offer a better gauge.
Arlington hasn’t made it yet, but they no longer have to fake it.
Crystal Miller led Arlington in a 44-29 home win over rival John Jay High School, scoring 15 points and showcasing her defensive versatility.
“Our team is showing that we should be taken seriously,” Miller said. “We’re not this little underdog, not some pushover.”
Arlington (5-7) continues to climb out of its early-season hole and has won two of its last three. Camille Loussedes and Shevaun Judon each added six points for the Admirals, who took control in the second quarter.
The lead grew to 20-9 after Judon’s driving layup, then Emily Stephens’ free throw late in the second. The Patriots mounted a brief rally and pulled within 22-17 on Allison Shaw’s 3-pointer at the second-quarter buzzer. But they would draw no closer. Sam Buragas had 10 points for John Jay (2-8).
Cassidy Clay’s jumper made it 26-17 with 6:38 left in the third and the Admirals held John Jay scoreless for the first 3:31 of the period. Judon’s layup eventually made it 35-20 with 1:10 to go in the third.
The Arlington defense was strong with well-timed slides, switches and close-outs. Miller, a center, even successfully covered guards at times. And when there was penetration, the Admirals swarmed the paint.
“We played ‘man’ defense so I think the girls were really pumped for that,” Arlington coach Kim Costello said.