Basketball finishes 2021 competing in the Groton Holiday Tournament


Dylan Drury '22

Sacred Heart Greenwich’s varsity basketball team played in the Groton Holiday Basketball Tournament December 17, going 1-2.

The Sacred Heart Greenwich varsity basketball team competed in the Groton Holiday Basketball Tournament December 17 and 18, 2021 at the Groton School located in Groton, Massachusetts.  Under the leadership of Coach Ayo Hart and senior captains Sarah Augustine and Franny O’Brien, the team finished with a 1-2 record.  Sophomore Payton Sfreddo earned All-Tournament Team accolades in recognition of her impressive performance on the court.

The varsity basketball team participates in a number of bonding activities throughout the weekend. Dylan Drury ’22

The team first faced Phillips Andover Academy (Andover).  In a close game of the tournament, Sacred Heart lost 70-72 against Andover.  The next game was a 42-65 loss against Lawrence Academy, but the team ended their trip with a 63- 38 consolation match win against Phillips Exeter Academy. 

Coach Hart believes the team played well against advanced teams in the northeast region.  She recognizes the importance of the team bonding that occurred during the trip.

“We finished the tournament 1-2 although our record does not adequately represent how well the girls played,” Coach Hart said.  “Our team worked so incredibly hard that weekend, and I could not be more proud of how hard they battled against three good boarding schools.  We shared the court with some of the most talented players in [New England Preparatory School Athletic Council].  Most importantly, the laughter and camaraderie that was enjoyed this weekend is undeniably invaluable.  It was a successful weekend all around.”

Franny was grateful to have the opportunity to play in a tournament alongside her teammates after the inability to do so because of COVID-19 during the 2020-2021 season.  Although the team had games last year, tournaments had been on pause since December 2019.  She believes the team grew stronger on and off the court while practicing, playing, and traveling as a group.

“The tournament was a great two days of exposure to other teams, specifically boarding schools that we are not usually able to play,” Franny said.  “Also, since the tournament was right around the holidays, we were able to bond as a team.” 

Selected to the tournament’s All-Tournament Team, Payton Sfreddo was a standout during Sacred Heart’s games.  Courtesy of Sacred Heart Communications Dept.

After playing at the Groton Tournament, Payton joined the All-Tournament Team award list.  She believes the tournament was a chance for underclassmen to bond with returning team members.   

“We were so lucky to have the opportunity to play at the Groton Lawrence holiday tournament.  Not only was there great competition, but there was also a chance to bond and grow closer to teammates.  Especially with a lot of underclassmen on the team, the trip we took will definitely help us throughout the season as we are now much more comfortable with each other and know how to have fun while still succeeding,” Payton said.  “I was especially honored to receive an all-tournament team selection.  I believe it speaks for our entire team and the work each player has put in in order to thrive together.  The trip we took will only benefit us for the rest of the season and I am so excited to see all that we can accomplish.”

Senior Kate Hong is one of the three varsity basketball teams managers.  Kate had the opportunity to travel to the Groton Tournament with the team, and thinks that the trip was a valuable experience for both the upper and underclassmen.

“Traveling with the team was a lot of fun. We haven’t been able to have an overnight trip in a while because of COVID-19 and it was very nice to finally travel again,” Kate said.  “It is always fun seeing competition outside of our normal [Fairchester Athletic Association] league.  It is always such a fun bonding experience and I remember when I was an underclassman it was very fun to be with upperclassmen.  So being a senior this year it was nice to be able to bring that same feeling towards our team.”

Featured Image by Dylan Drury ’22