Krasniqi hits 1,000th point as Warde girls romp
Published 11:08 pm, Wednesday, February 15, 2017
FAIRFIELD — Another game, another milestone for the Fairfield Warde girls basketball team.
On Monday, it was coach Dave Danko who celebrated a milestone — his 400th career victory with a victory over McMahon. On Wednesday it was senior forward Iliana Krasniqi who earned the spotlight, scoring her 1,000th point in a 47-26 victory over town-rival Ludlowe Wednesday night at the Falcons gym.
“She’s pretty incredible. I met Iliana back in third or fourth grade and she stood out back then,” Danko said. “She represents the Warde program in such a positive way. Not many people can say they scored 1,000 points and did it within the ‘team’ game. It’s a great accomplishment for her and she’s put a lot of time and thanks to her hard work, this is the reward.”
Krasniqi scored 14 points to lead Warde, giving her 1,006 for her career. Daja Polk scored 11 and Olivia Parisi added nine as the Mustangs finished the regular season at 14-6 (12-4 in the FCIAC) and will play against Norwalk in the FCIAC quarterfinals Saturday at Norwalk High. Not a bad finish when you consider that the Mustangs lost both Shania Osborne (knee) and Libby McKenna (orbital bone surgery) early in the season and struggled coming out of the gates, losing four of their first five games.
“After we lost them (Osborne and McKenna), we had to get some sophomores and freshmen some experience so it took some time to get the chemistry going,” Krasniqi said. “But once we got into a groove, we started clicking.”
Ludlowe took a quick 3-2 lead three minutes in, but Warde started changing things up defensively, switching defenders when the Falcons looked to set screens. Thanks to a big size advantage with Osborne and Krasniqi, the Mustangs held the Falcons to just two points over the next 13:44, taking a 27-5 halftime lead.
“We started switching on the picks, going man-to-man. We have a big, big size difference and we worked their screens,” Danko said. “They like to penetrate and kick the ball back out, but we kept them from getting the ball in.”
Ludlowe didn’t quit and put together a 10-0 run to open the third quarter and continued to fight right to the final horn.
“That’s been the defining attitude about our team all season … we’re fighters.” Ludlowe coach Sara Kinsley said. “It doesn’t matter the score is, it doesn’t matter what the advantage or disadvantage is, we don’t until the last second of every single game and as a coach, you can’t be more proud than that.
Sophomore Bridget Paulmann led Ludlowe with 11 points with senior Kelly Kiremidjain adding six and freshman Trish Carey scoring five for the Falcons, who fell to 4-15 overall, 4-11 in the FCIAC with a game against St. Joseph coming on Friday.
“We’re planning for big things in the future,” Kinsley said. “This is where the foundation starts right here. I’m looking forward in building on what we have and moving forward.”
WARDE 47, LUDLOWE 26
WARDE (14-6, 12-4 FCIAC)
Kristina Krasniqi 1 1-2 3, Olivia Parisi 1 7-8 9, Shania Osborne 2 2-2 6, Daja Polk 4 1-4 11, Iliana Krasniqi 6 2-2 14, Catherine Allison 0 1-2 1, Toni Lamparski 1 0-0 3, Carolyn Mills 0 0-0 0, Aleysha Henry 0 0-0 0, Caroline Aufiero 0 0-0 0, Anna Cohenuram 0 0-0 0, Ava Fitzpatrick 0 0-0 0. Totals: 15 12-18 47
LUDLOWE (4-15, 4-11)
Paige O’Connell 0 0-2 0, Bridget Paulmann 2 7-8 11, Julia Colica 0 0-0 0, Erin O’Leary 1 0-0 2, Kelly Kiremidjian 2 2-4 6, Trish Carey 2 0-0 5, Lily Traum 1 0-0 2. Ids Boca 0 0-0 0. Totals: 8 9-12 26
WARDE 13 14 10 10—47
LUDLOWE 3 2 12 9—26
3-pointers: W—Polk 2, Lamparski Iliana Krasniqi 2; L—Carey