WHEELERSBURG – Defense wins championships, and defense also wins SOC II games on your home court.
That’s exactly what the Wheelersburg Pirates found out on Monday night as they defeated the Valley Indians 50-30, limiting the Indians to just six first half points thanks to a very impressive defensive effort.
“I thought our kids did a nice job of fighting through screens,” said Wheelersburg head coach Dusty Spradlin following the Pirates 20 point conference home win. “We kept good ball pressure. I told them before we left the huddle to go out on the floor that we want to make things as tough as we can on every possession.”
The Pirates not only did a good job of limiting Valley’s shot attempts by being very aggressive and filling passing lanes, but also by not allowing Valley second or third shot attempts.
“The big key is to rebound, and that’s one of the big areas that we struggled with Saturday,” said Spradlin. “We had some good possessions defensively on Saturday, but we didn’t rebound the ball. Tonight, especially that first half, I thought our kids contested shots and then really went after rebounds.”
Wheelersburg started off the game red hot, shooting and defensively, to the tune of a 16-2 first quarter lead over Valley. That same aggressiveness carried over into a 32-6 halftime lead and would by game’s end turn into a 50-30 home conference win.
Wheelersburg was led in scoring by senior guard Abbie Kallner who had a game high 19 points after she scored 28 in the Pirates win over Spring Valley (WV) on Saturday. Alaina Keeney had 10 points in the Pirates win, all of which came in the first half, and Kaylee Darnell hit the double digit mark with 10 points as well.
Valley was led in scoring by Karysn Conaway who was the lone Indian to finish in double digits with 10 points, and senior Bailee Day who finished with 9 points.
The Pirates will finish the month of December in a road trip to South Webster on Thursday and return to action on January 3rd where they will have their rematch with Minford to try and sweep the Falcons in the two team’s season series.
“We’ve got Thursday on the road with Webster, we get a little break for Christmas and start round two January 3rd at Minford,” said Spradlin. “It’s been exhausting, already. This league has been a good league, and I look for the second half to be even more exciting than the first. I think now everyone has had the chance to see everyone play, we’ve got a lot of good coaches in the league that want to take away what you can do. I think the second half will be interesting because anybody can beat anybody. We’re going to have to be ready to get to that level every night, especially defensively.”
Valley will finish off the month of December with games against Portsmouth West on Thursday, and on the road at Clay next Thursday.
FINAL: Wheelersburg beats Valley 50-30 in SOC II girls play. #PDTsports
— Jacob Smith (@JacobSmithPDT) December 18, 2018
Wheelersburg: 16-16-10-8 – 50
Valley: 2-4-9-15 – 30
Wheelersburg: 18 FGs, 6 3pts. (A. Kallner, Keeney 2), 8/13 FTs. Scoring: A. Kallner 19, Keeney 10, Darnell 10, Lani Erwin 5, Estep 2, E. Kallner 2, Jolly 1, Hamilton 1
Valley: 11 FGs, 1 3pt. (Call 1), 5/6 FTs. Scoring: Conaway 10, Day 9, Call 7, Buckle 2, Gilliland 2
Reach Jacob Smith at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT