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Silfen Takes Control in Blind Brook Win

RYE BROOK, N.Y. – Croton had cut Blind Brook’s lead to three points midway through the third quarter Wednesday when Ally Silfen stepped forward.

The junior forward asserted herself, scoring seven consecutive points, fueling a run that would send second-seeded Blind Brook to a 54-36 victory over seventh-seeded Croton in a Section 1 Class B Girls Basketball Championship quarterfinal game.

Blind Brook (14-6) advances to the final four at the Westchester County Center. The Trojans will play third-seeded Dobbs Ferry in a semifinal Tuesday. The other semifinal will be two-time defending state champion and top-seeded Irvington against fourth-seeded John F. Kennedy of Somers.

This will be Blind Brook’s second trip to the county center in the last three years. Blind Brook lost to North Salem in 2010. Silfen, along with Lea Saliba, Jackie Lavitt and Shannon Reddy were on the team during the 2009-10 season.

“It’s really exciting,” said Silfen, who scored 12 of her 17 points in the second half. “We have worked really hard this season and we knew where we wanted to go. Going to the county center was one our goals this season.”

Blind Brook stamped its ticket because of Silfen’s play in the third quarter. Croton, which was playing a diamond-and-one on Silfen throughout the game, held her to five points in the first half.

“Whoever was open for us was making their shot,” Silfen said. “My teammates did such a good job that it freed me up.”

Grace Mulligan’s driving lay-up brought Croton within three at 26-23 with 4:32 remaining in the third quarter. On Blind Brook’s ensuing possession, Silfen took a pass from Saliba, who had a game-high 18 points, behind the arc and swished a 21-footer.

Following consecutive Croton misses, Silfen hit a driving lay-up then went glass on a 14-footer in the lane, extending Blind Brook’s lead to 10, 33-23. Saliba, who also dished out six assists and had six rebounds, added the final four points of the quarter. Saliba and Silfen opened the final quarter with baskets before Bella Addeo stopped the run at 15 points with a jumper.

“We just stayed focused and brought all that we had,” said Silfen, who also had nine rebounds. “We didn’t want this to be the last time we played.”

Reddy finished with eight points and Lavitt scored five and grabbed a game-high 18 rebounds.

Mulligan led Croton with 12 points, point guard Katie Dymes and Addeo added 11 points apiece.

Croton 4 12 7 13 – 36 Blind Brook 13 9 15 17 – 54

Croton (36) – Katie Dymes 5-0-11, Grace Mulligan 4-4-12, Bella Addeo 4-2-11, Melissa Wagner 0-0-0, Maggie Dinger 0-0-0, Summer Tuman 0-0-0, Ava Powchik 1-0-2, Arielle Gilman 0-0-0. Totals: 14-6-36. Blind Brook (54) – Olivia Brettschneider 0-0-0, Jackie Lavitt 2-1-5, Shannon Reddy 2-4-8, Lea Saliba 8-2-18, Ally Silfen 7-2-17, Sabrina Scappatura 1-4-6, Sabrina Benowich 0-0-0, Molly Marks 0-0-0, Danielle Halpern 0-0-0, Rachel Askinazi 0-0-0, Totals: 20-13-54. 3-point goals – Cr: Dymes, Addeo; BB: Silfen.

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