Girls basketball: Hatters topple Trumbull to defend FCIAC title

Uniqua Tucker scored a game-high 14 points, carrying the fourth-seeded Danbury High girls basketball team past second-seeded Trumbull, 41-30, in the FCIAC title game at Fairfield Ludlowe on Thursday night.

The Hatters (20-3), who defeated Trumbull in last year's FCIAC final, led by as many as 18 points in the second half. The Eagles then used a 10-0 third-quarter run that extended into the final stanza to get back within single digits, 31-23, on Amanda Pfohl's three-point play with 6:45 remaining.

But, Trumbull (20-3) made just two baskets the rest of the way, while Danbury junior center Kayla Handberry (eight points) scored her team's final six points to help the Hatters seal the victory.

"The kids stepped up and did what I asked," Danbury coach Jackie DiNardo said.

The Gartner twins, Rachel and Rebecca, shared tournament MVP honors. Rachel scored eight points, while Rebecca chipped in with seven.

"Everybody wants to stop the twins," DiNardo said. "They don't realize we've got other players. They'll find the open person."

Erin Moore notched 10 points for Trumbull, while Pfohl added eight.

Katherine O'Leary's jumper gave the Eagles an 8-4 edge at the end of the first frame, but Trumbull failed to make a single field goal in the second quarter.

"We had some scoring lulls we couldn't overcome," Eagles' coach Steve Tobitsch said.

Danbury capitalized on that Trumbull scoring drought, taking a 23-12 halftime lead via a 19-4 run. Rachel Gartner scored six points during the burst, while Tucker tossed in seven of her nine first-half markers.

From there, Danbury held the lead the rest of the way.

For the full game story, check out next week's Times.