Avonworth girls get back on winning track

AVONWORTH’S Montee’a Hunter drives to the hoop against Southside Beaver in last Friday’s win that stopped a three game slide for the Lady Lopes. Hunter’s 13 points along with 16 points by Caitlyn Miller provided a much needed boost to the Avonworth offense that has been struggling to find consistency in the back-court.

By JIM RUMBLE

It was a week that began with their third consecutive loss, but changed direction with back-to-back wins for the Avonworth girls basketball team.

On Thursday, Jan. 9, Avonworth hosted Beaver in a section match-up and lost 36-31.

"It was a nice effort. The girls played hard, but Beaver is a good team," said coach Bob Schulz.

The Lady ‘Lopes struggled from the field early on, but what was key in the loss was Avonworth's free throw shooting, where they made 11 of 25 attempts from the line.

The 'Lopes took the early lead in the first quarter, doing a great job of hustling and getting to loose balls.
Mackenzie Mayernik made two free throws and Madison Sheehan converted a three-point play to give the Lady ‘Lopes a 5-3 lead at the end of the first quarter.

Montee'a Hunter started the second quarter with a transition basket to extend the lead, but Avonworth would add only a free throw by Mayernik through the rest of the period as the 'Lopes were outscored 11-3 to trail at the half 14-8.

Beaver took a 12-point lead at 24-12 midway through the third quarter, but the 'Lopes finally found their offense from the perimeter when Katie Gould and Erika Thomas hit on jumpers that cut the lead to 24-16. The teams exchanged baskets a couple of times, with Gould hitting on a bank shot and Mayernik scoring on a put-back as Avonworth trailed 28-20 at the end of the third quarter.

In the fourth quarter, the 'Lopes were able to cut into the lead and outscore the Bobcats 11-8, but it wasn't enough. They fell 36-31.

Mayernik finished with 9 points followed by Gould with 6, Hunter and Sheehan with 5 points each and Thomas with 4 points.

On Friday, Jan. 10, Avonworth picked up a nice nonsection victory at home when they battled back from an early deficit to defeat Southside Beaver 52-46.

Schulz lauded the efforts of Caitlyn Miller and Hunter, who finished with 16 and 13 points respectively.

Avonworth was only 2-10 from the floor in the first quarter, but Miller hit on two shots from beyond the arc and the Lady ‘Lopes were 5-8 from the free throw line.

The Rams were 6-14 from the floor and led 13-11 at the end of the first quarter.

The 'Lopes finally evened up the score late in the second quarter when Hunter's three-pointer knotted the teams at 19-19 with 1:40 left. Avonworth committed three consecutive turnovers down the stretch and trailed 22-19 at the half.

The 'Lopes began to light it up from the outside to claim the lead in the third quarter. A couple of three-pointers by Hunter and a three-ball by Thomas came in a 10-2 run that had Avonworth up 29-24 with 4:31 left in the quarter. Miller hit a mid-range jumper and one from beyond the arc but Southside Beaver answered with back-to-back three-pointers to cut Avonworth's lead. Lauren Williams added a free throw that gave the Lady ‘Lopes a 35-32 lead going into the fourth quarter.

Sheehan scored six points in the fourth quarter and Avonworth converted 9-12 free throws to earn a 52-46 victory.

Mayernik and Sheehan finished with 6 points each followed by Gould and Thomas with 4 points each and Williams with 3 points.

Avonworth then defeated Northgate in a section game on Monday.

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