West Hartford Mayor, State Senator, Bid Good Luck to Championship-Bound Hall Girls

The Hall girls basketball team poses with State Sen. Beth Bye (left) and Mayor Shari Cantor (front row, third from right). Photo credit: Sue Gellerman

The girls basketball team from West Hartford’s Hall High School will head to the CIAC Class LL finals on Saturday, March 17, at Mohegan Sun Arena.

West Hartford Mayor Shari Cantor shows several Hall team members the yearbook with photos of the 1977 team that played in the finals, while State Sen. Beth Bye greets other team members. Photo credit: Sue Gellerman

By Ronni Newton

Members of the Hall girls basketball team received some surprise visitors before practice on Thursday to wish them luck before they showcase their talents on a very big stage Saturday, facing Mercy High School in the CIAC Class LL championship game at Mohegan Sun Arena.

An exciting come-from-behind victory over Enfield on March 10, decided in overtime, gave the Warriors the chance to play for the championship.

It has been 41 years since the Hall girls basketball team played in the finals, and the team has never won a state championship in girls basketball.

In 1977, Hall lost to Lee High School of New Haven by a score of 37-35. A final shot at the buzzer rimmed out, ending the Warriors’ undefeated season. That team was coached by Kathy Walling, who also formerly coached field hockey and girls lacrosse and in 2014 was inducted into the Connecticut High School Coaches Association Hall of Fame.

West Hartford Mayor Shari Cantor, who graduated from Hall in 1977, brought her yearbook to show the current team. She told them that she was friends with many of the girls on the last team that went to the finals.

State Sen. Beth Bye also came to practice to wish the team luck. She grew up in Greenwich, and her father coached basketball at St. Mary’s High School in Greenwich for more than 30 years.

Bye went on to play basketball at St. Mary’s, and told the girls that in the early years of Title IX, for girls the opportunity to play basketball was far from a “given.”

The Class LL girls basketball final will be played at 6:15 p.m. on Saturday, March 17, at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. We-Ha.com will be there covering the game.

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State Sen. Beth Bye (left) speaks to the Hall girls basketball team. Photo credit: Sue Gellerman

State Sen. Beth Bye takes a shot at the Hall girls basketball team practice on Thursday. Photo credit: Sue Gellerman

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