By John Anderson

With the final buzzer on Wednesday night, winter sports at Auburn High School came to an unexpected conclusion. #3 Auburn (16-4) faced #6 Groton-Dunstable (14-6) in the MIAA Central D2 Quarterfinals, and many expected a tough but victorious game. Instead, the Rockets got shot down 63-46.

The Crusaders are a highly motivated, chest-thumping type of team, and when they took the lead in the first quarter, they never let go. Groton-Dunstable plays a fast paced game starting with great rebounding and ending with high shooting percentages.

Unlike their norm, Auburn didn’t succeed with any 3-point shots while the Crusaders logged 6. The Rockets also missed too many layups and shots in the paint to mention.

It may be nerves. It may be inexperience. But, there was no lack of effort by the Rockets. Colleen Cutting scored 16 points while Captains Erin Burke and Emily Sarkisian had 13 and 11 respectively.

If Auburn could roster three more girls of this caliber, they would have a state championship in their sights. Burke has definite college potential, and, hopefully, some schools are looking at her.

Coach Ellen Kaschuluk said, “They are a highly skilled, well coached, quick shooting great team.” “We did all we could do.”

The Coach added, “Their fan base was with them tonight, and that impacted the game as well.” The Crusaders, unlike the Rockets, had a tough schedule this season, so they learned to play tough. And, their fans obviously appreciated it.

In the end, this has been a fun and, at times, exciting season. Thanks ladies!

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