Friday’s 2A GBB: Bearcats Scorch the Nets Against Centralia
Rip City: Waring and Mencke Lead W.F. West with 14 Points Apiece
By Jordan Nailon / firstname.lastname@example.org
W.F. West turned the Mint City into Rip City for at least one night on Friday as they downed Centralia 79-21 in Evergreen 2A Conference girls basketball play.
During the first half of the season’s second rendition of the Swamp Cup the the Bearcats were so hot from the field that they, quite literally, ripped the nets. After going up 16-0 to start the game W.F. West started raining in three-pointers and dropping in fast break buckets in alternating fashion. By the end of the end of the first quarter they’d run out to a 26-4 lead, and they doubled down to make it 52-13 at the half.
That’s when W.F. West athletic director Jeff Johnson called in the ladder crew to replace the tattered net on the home team’s half of the court.
“That’s what you call blistering the nets!” said Johnson as a new pearly white net was laced into the cylinder.
W.F. West knocked down 31 of their 60 shots on the night for a 51.7 percent clip. That offensive barrage included a ten of 28 effort from three point land, with four Bearcats knocking down at least two long balls each.
Madi Mencke and Annika Waring led W.F. West with 14 points each. Mencke found herself the beneficiary of a handful of leak out passes following Centralia turnovers while hitting two three-pointers herself.
“Right when I see Drea going up for a rebound I’m off to the races,” said Mencke, who listed Maggie Vadala as another catalyst for her team’s fastbreak buckets. “She gets a lot of our rebounds. She just sneaks in there and gets them and kicks it out and we’re off.”
Waring, meanwhile, put on a show on the block by unleashing a series of old-school post moves that can only be taught by uncles in driveways.
“Annika doesn’t play AAU, but she gets in the gym and she works on her Rashard Lewis move, or whatever. I mean, she does that stuff and you can tell,” said W.F. West coach Tom Kelly.
On the flip side, Centralia shot just 22.6 percent from the floor and made only three of 15 shots from downtown. The Tigers were also outrebounded 39-15 by W.F. West.
Kylie Sharp led Centralia with six points. Makayla Erickson added four points for Centralia while Madelinn Corwin and Carissa Kaut scored three points each.
The Bearcats offense was driven largely by their defense which never gave up more than nine points in a quarter and forced 17 turnovers.
“Maggie (Vadala) gets more steals than anybody. We don’t press like we used to so we have to do it in other ways like jumping the passing lanes,” said Kelly. “Maggie is probably the cornerstone of our defense and gets her hands on the ball, but I can put Mencke in off the bench and she’s got a little speed and she jumps the passings lanes. We can kind of go a couple of different ways with our girls.”
Mencke, a sophomore guard, said it was nice to be able to secure the rivalry victory on the Bearcat’s home floor with a league title and playoff seeding still on the line.
“Especially for our seniors. It’s always nice beating Centralia on at home the last time you’re going to face them,” Mencke said.
W.F. West (14-5, 8-1 conference) will play at Black Hills on Tuesday.
Centralia (4-15, 2-8 league) hosts Rochester on Tuesday.
BEARCATS 79, TIGERS 21
Centralia 4 9 3 5 —21
W.F. West 26 26 20 7 —79
Centralia (21) — Corwin 3, Erickson 4, Hawley 1, Jensen 2, Kaut 3, Sharp 6, Storphy 2
FG: 7 of 31 —.226 FT: 4 of 12 —.333 Reb: 15
W.F. West (79) — Bennett 3, Brumfield 7, S. Haakenson 10, M. Haakenson 12, Henry 3, McCallum 4, Mencke 14, Roberts 6, Vadala 4, Waring 14, Zylstra 2
FG: 31 of 60 —.517 FT: 7 of 11 —.636 Reb: 39 (Vadala/Henry 5)