On Jan. 5, the West Wilkes varsity girls basketball team had no trouble dispatching East Wilkes in Millers Creek on senior night, 53-17.
It was West’s sixth straight win over East, a streak that was preceded by eight straight losses to the Cardinals. It was also the season and Mountain Valley 1A/2A Athletic Conference opener for both squads.
The Cardinals led 4-3 early in the first but relentless full-court pressure from the Blackhawks led to several steals. West reeled off the next 16 points to take a 19-4 lead into the second quarter and never looked back, holding the Cardinals scoreless in the second quarter.
Carson Ledford paced West with 14 points and five rebounds. Jamilyn Wilcox had 10 points and six steals. Parker Childress also had 10 points. Jamesyn Bell had five assists and four steals while Cheyenne Clonch chipped in with seven points and five rebounds.
“I was extremely pleased with our girls’ play, especially since we haven’t gotten to practice as much as usual,” said West Coach Allie Greene. “We have so many girls playing both volleyball and basketball right now that even when we do practice we practice short so we don’t lose their legs.
“And I was very pleased with their legs and their running game. We pushed the ball up the court well and defensively we played with a lot of intensity. We shot the ball well and ran our offense well.”
Having not scrimmaged or played nonconference opponents, Greene expected her team to be rusty. “We have some things to work on in practice but overall I am extremely pleased. Our girls are having to focus mentally and push themselves physically during the overlapping games stretch and I couldn’t be more proud of them right now.”
Prior to the game, West seniors Jamilyn Wilcox, Gracie Lambert, Jamesyn Bell and Cheyenne Clonch were recognized.
Eagles clip Vikings
Also on Jan. 5, host Wilkes Central upended North Wilkes, 55-46, for the Eagles’ fourth straight win over the Vikings.
Central jumped out to a 9-0 lead thanks to layups by Zoe Susi, Sarah Lowe and Karlie Anderson and a 3-pointer from Catherine Chaquea. But North went on a 7-2 run in the final minute and a half of the quarter to stay close, capped by McKenzie Johnson’s 3-pointer at the buzzer.
The Eagles led 28-23 at the break and extended their lead to 10 points after three quarters.
The Vikings outscored the hosts 15-14 in the final quarter, and another 3-pointer by Johnson made it a two-possession game, 52-46, with 37.5 seconds to play. But Susi made 3-of-4 free throws in the final seconds to secure the win.
Susi, a junior point guard, was Central’s player of the game with 25 points, four rebounds, four assists (with only one turnover) and three steals.