Williamstown girls run past Tyler

WILLIAMSTOWN — If anyone thought Fred Sauro and his Williamstown girls would ever slow down, it won’t be this season.

With losing only two regulars from last year, the Yellowjacket cagers after five minutes Thursday night sprung into action with their lethal fullcourt trapping defense and roared past visiting Tyler Consolidated to the tune of 86-45 in season openers for both squads.

With the ‘Jackets up just 15-9 at the 2:41 mark of the first period, they unleashed their pressure trap and quickly turned an inbounds steal and two successful backcourt pressures to force turnovers to score three of the next four Williamstown buckets to surge ahead by a 23-12 margin at the quarter break.

And the points kept right on coming off the press for the hosts in the second stanza as the lead grew to 51-24 by halftime and to 77-31 at the end of the third quarter before the final 41-point spread for the Yellowjackets, voted this week at No. 4 in the Associated Press preseason West Virginia Class A girls basketball ratings.

Point guard Ashley Morris led Williamstown with 19 points, followed by Bethany Wager with 15, Samantha Dedrick with 12 and Jenna Pridemore with 11.

For Tyler, Josey Jones netted 13 points, and Aleah Black and Peyton Kocher each tallied 10.

“Tyler is a good team,” said Sauro. “They were good last year and have a lot of those girls back. But we just did a really good job tonight with our pressure. I think our passing is starting to improve; we’re seeing each other really well. We’ve got depth, so can run 10 people in and out.

“We seem to have a lot of interchangeable parts, but still have a lot of things to work on.”

And that’s with “a good early-season test,” said Sauro, coming up for Willliamstown next weekend in its annual Fenton Shootout. The ‘Jackets will go up against Class AA Poca first on Friday. “I’ve looked at film on them, and haven’t seen a team play that good a defense in a long, long time,” said Sauro.

Then his team will face either Class A Wheeling Central or Class AA Clay County, two seemingly-always good teams year after year, on Saturday.


GIRLS BASKETBALL ROUNDUP

Wood County Christian 30, East Richland  Christian 25

ST. CLAIRSVILLE, Ohio — Sarah Barnes went off for game-highs of 20 points, 15 rebounds and six blocked shots here Thursday night to help visiting Wood County Christian win its first game of the campaign, a 30-25 triumph against East Richland Christian at Ohio University-Eastern.

The 1-2 Wildcats, who play host to Cross Lanes Christian at 3 p.m. Saturday, also received six points, five assists and two steals from Abby Blauser.

Ally Stevens paced East Richland (0-1) with a dozen markers.

Monroe Central 60, Magnolia 49

NEW MARTINSVILLE — Monroe Central used a 19-10 posting in the fourth quarter on Thursday evening to pull away from Magnolia during a 60-49 road win.

Allison Kuhn knocked down six 3s en route to a game-high 32 points.

Marlee Miller double-doubled with 10 points and a game-high 11 rebounds for the Seminoles (1-2).

Jordan Delaney scored a baker’s dozen for the Blue Eagles, who were making their season debut.

Magnolia, which plays Monday at Union Local, also received 11 points from Kelsi Chapman along with 10 points and a game-high seven assists from Taylor Ludewig.

Vinton County 60, Marietta 51

MARIETTA — Marietta High battled but ultimately fell short to Vinton County, 60-51, in its season-opener Thursday at Sutton Gym.

The Tigers trailed 16-7 after a quarter but tied things up at 19-all by halftime.

However, the Vikings outscored Marietta 41-32 in the second half to improve to 2-1 on the young season.

Marietta, which fell to 0-1 and travels to Zanesville Saturday, saw Caleigh Doan and Tyanna Washburn scored 12 points apiece. Hannah Grosel added 10 and Natalie Brooks netted nine.

Vinton’s Cassie Bentley led all scorers with 23 points. Sammy Jo Thompson added 17 for the winners.

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