Girls’ Basketball: Charles City 38, West Point 33
Overcoming poor shooting that featured a 13-minute field goal drought and a single second quarter basket, Charles City’s Lady Panthers rallied from a five-point second half deficit to overtake West Point’s visiting Lady Pointers 38-33.
Charles City jumped out early in the Nov. 30 non-district basketball contest to lead 5-0 on baskets from Jessica Hill and Hailey Holmes. The hosts would go up 7-2 midway through the first before the visitors put together an 8-0 run to close the quarter.
Then the hosts encountered another problem– finding the hoop. From the midway point of the opening quarter until six seconds remained in the first half, Charles City missed 22 straight shots from the floor. Holmes’ lay-up ended the drought, giving the Lady Panthers 13 points for the half. Luckily for the hosts, West Point also had its scoring woes and only led by four (17-13).
Transitioning into the third period, Holmes banked a shot off the backboard to cut the Lady Pointer lead to two, but a 7-0 response by the visitors gave them their largest lead of the night, 25-18, at the 3:40 mark.
Trailing 28-23 heading into the fourth, Charles City’s first year coach, VaShaun Otey, elected to dismiss the zone defense and switch to player-to-player pressure. The move ignited the Lady Panther offense as junior guard Cheyenne Davis scored the next five points, including a three that knotted the game at 28 apiece with 6:12 to play. Sara Whitehead’s two free throws with 5:12 remaining would give the hosts the lead for the first time since the early moments of the opening quarter.
Taty Gresham’s put-back enabled West Point to create a 30-30 tie, but two more free throws from Holmes coupled with a free throw each from Davis and Whitehead put the Lady Panthers up for good.
After the game, Otey said that the bucket from Holmes at the end of the second quarter was key going into halftime.
“It gave the girls something positive to look forward to in the second half,” he said. “Tonight, they had to want it. There were a lot of nerves out there being the first home game, but they showed some fight at the end of the half.”
Otey also commented about his team’s experience and how the effort displayed in the game has to be consistent.
“We have to go harder in the first half like we did in the second half,” he continued. “We have to make free throws and finish at the basket.”
Holmes led Charles City (2-0) with 14 points. The Lady Panthers’ Davis scored seven followed by five each from Hill, Whitehead, and Adrienne Miles, and Taylor Bradby’s two.
West Point (0-2) was led by Gresham’s 14 points.