To help build the skills of the already-dominant Braintree High School girls basketball team, school officials have worked to incorporate a couple of difficult non-league competitions this season.
The School Committee approved an out-of-state trip to Providence earlier this week, allowing the team to play La Salle Academy, one of Rhode Island's top Catholic preparatory schools, on Friday, Dec. 28.
That game comes in addition to the Spalding Hoop Hall Classic in Springfield on Jan. 17. Braintree will play Christ the King High School, a New York Catholic school famous for its basketball program.
The non-league games, which will count toward the team's regular-season record, will help the team be "battle-tested" come playoffs, Athletic Director Michael Denise said.
"It's very difficult to find good games" considering the skill-level of Braintree's players, the core of whom are still only juniors, Denise said.