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New Canaan Girls Grab Key Comeback Win, 44-37

NEW CANAAN, Conn. – Kelly Armstrong posted a double-double and Sarah Mannelly netted 20 points as the New Canaan High girls basketball team snapped a four-game losing streak against Fairfield Ludlowe on Thursday. The Rams got back on track in their playoff push, erasing an eight-point third quarter deficit to win, 44-37.

“When you don’t win it starts to take a toll on your confidence. Now I think the girls are starting to believe that they’re good basketball players,” New Canaan head coach Kim Palmer said. “We’re going to push and fight until they tell us we’re not in it anymore.”

Trailing 23-17 at halftime, Armstrong (16 points, 11 rebounds) came alive in the third with a 10-point quarter. But it was Mannelly who gave the Rams the shot in the arm. With the clock winding down in the third, Mannelly's drive to the basket was met with three defenders. As time expired, Mannelly heaved up an off-balance four-foot jumper that hit nothing but net to tie the game at 33-33.

New Canaan’s fourth quarter full-court press caused all sorts of problems for Ludlowe, which scored just four points in the final eight minutes. The Rams held off a pair of Ludlowe attacks that could have tied the game.

“The fourth quarter has been tough for us lately in this losing streak, so it was big to finish today,” Armstrong said. “It was good to be up in the fourth quarter because we’ve been down a lot recently. It definitely gave us more composure.”

New Canaan (8-8 conference, 10-8 overall) still has a slim chance to qualify for the conference playoffs, but will have to beat both Westhill and undefeated Danbury in its final two games to have a shot. The Rams host Westhill on Monday for Senior Night at 7 p.m.

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