Girls high school basketball recap Week 9: A wild finish to the CCC regular season

The Glastonbury girls basketball team (14-4) handed Conard its third loss, 57-54, Tuesday. Then last year’s Class S champion Northwest Catholic (15-4) beat Glastonbury 69-54 Friday night.

Simsbury (15-2) lost to Southington (10-8) 43-42 Friday night.

Simsbury was slated to play Glastonbury Monday night. Both were 5-1 in their division.

Welcome to the wild (CCC) West where anything goes on any given night. At least that’s how it seemed last week.

The regular season wraps up this week and the CCC tournament starts Thursday with first-round games and it should be interesting, even outside of the CCC West.

Newington (16-4), which lost to eventual champion Simsbury 49-46 last year in the semifinals, is very much in the mix. So is E.O. Smith, another semifinalist last year, which went through a rough patch when it lost top scorer Jill Dingler to an ankle injury (she’s back now). Middletown (15-4) knocked off Simsbury. And it’s likely nobody wants to play Windsor, the best 12-7 team in the state who played a tough early schedule, then got a top transfer and has won its last five games.

The quarterfinals will take place Saturday, the semifinals Feb. 20 and the finals Feb. 22 with the last two rounds being played at the University of Hartford.

Top performers of the week

Maddie Benigni, Mercy: Benigni had 25 points, including hitting 11 of 12 free throws, in a 52-48 loss to Hamden Friday.

Sydney Cassidy, Somers: Cassidy scored 23 points in a 58-27 victory over Canton Tuesday.

Ayanna Franks, Windsor: Franks had 32 points and 12 rebounds in a 92-30 win over Wilbur Cross Wednesday and had 36 points and 19 rebounds in an 87-18 win over Wethersfield Friday on Senior Night.

Elizabeth Glover, Bacon Academy: Glover had a career-high 20 rebounds to go with nine points in a 54-37 victory over Ledyard Friday.

Madison Handrahan, Glastonbury: Handrahan had 24 points and 10 steals in a 57-54 win over Conard Tuesday.

Olivia Jarvis, Simsbury: Jarvis had 29 points in a 62-31 win over Hall Tuesday.

Liana Salamone, East Hampton: Salamone scored 25 points in a 56-39 win over Morgan Tuesday and 33 points in a 60-33 win over Cromwell Friday.

Shalyn Smith, Middletown: Smith had 28 points in a 51-46 loss to Bristol Eastern Thursday.

Maeve Staunton, Northwest Catholic: Staunton went 7 for 7 from the 3-point line and had 27 points as Northwest Catholic defeated Glastonbury 69-54 Friday.

Sequoia Turcotte-Briggs, Classical: Turcotte-Briggs had 28 points in a 50-30 victory over International/Aerospace Friday and 32 points in a 58-37 win over Hartford Public Thursday.

Storylines of the week

E.O. Smith’s Jill Dingler is back after missing a few games due to an injured ankle. Dingler scored 11 points in E.O. Smith’s 61-41 win over Manchester Thursday.

East Hampton is the only undefeated girls basketball team left in the state after Hamden beat Sacred Heart 67-61 last Tuesday. The Bellringers (18-0) are the defending Class M champions. East Hampton has two more games left to play in the regular season, against North Branford Wednesday and Portland Thursday.

Why Windsor’s Brittany Huggins says star guard Ayanna Franks ‘might be the best player I’ll ever coach’

Games of the week

The CCC tournament starts Thursday at the higher seeded team’s home court with quarterfinals taking place Saturday at Plainville High and the semis and finals Feb. 20 and 22 at the University of Hartford. Simsbury, which beat Conard 40-37 last year, is the defending champion.

The SCC tournament starts Thursday with first round games at the court of the higher seed, then continues Saturday with quarterfinals at Sheehan High School. The semifinals will be Monday at Law High School in Milford and the championship game will take place at Quinnipiac’s M&T Bank Arena. Hamden is the defending champion.