NEW BOSTON – When it mattered most down the stretch, the New Boston Tigers got the defensive stops they needed to pick up a home conference win over the Green Bobcats Thursday night.
“I thought for the most part,” said Tigers head coach Kayla Wiley, “Our girls did a nice job of limiting their looks on the defensive end. Lexus did a good job offensively and trying to stop them from getting it inside to [Kame Sweeney]. Kenzie Whitley on Kasey Kimbler did a fantastic job. Most of the time when she scored it was because of a switch. She also did a great job of getting out in transition and running the lanes.”
When you factor in the offensive and defensive sides of the court, Whitley may have had one of her most complete games of the season.
The freshman guard finished with 11 points, seven of which came in the first half, and did a nice job of limiting Green’s talented freshman, Kimbler, when she was covering her before getting switched off.
For the game, the Tigers defense was very active in their attempts to force turnovers. A big part of that was Taylen Hickman.
Scoring five points on the night, Hickman’s ability to find the ball and cause the Green guards to turn the ball over was a big reason for win their over the Bobcats on Thursday.
“Tonight, she came off the bench and really gave us a spark,” said Wiley when speaking of Hickman’s night. “There at the end, she made a little mental mistake, but she made up for it by not giving up and getting a really big steal for us when we needed. And Kenzie (Whitley) got that pick off when they tried inbounding it to Kimbler really quick; those are some big plays and I’m really proud of my girls for that.”
Kimbler finished with a game high 17 points, while her teammate Kimberly Brown finished with 12 and Kame Sweeney finished with eight from the post.
Whitley and Hickman had standout performances for the Tigers on the defensive end while Sammy and Lexus Oiler combined for 25 points (Lexus team high 16, Sammy 9) to help lead the Tigers to a home victory.
With just a little more than two weeks left in the regular season leading up to tournament action, Wiley is hoping to see her team continue to gain some standing in the postseason seeding race.
“Tournament time is coming up, I’ll have to vote coming up. I’m hoping next week we get a win against Eastern, maybe that will bump us up a little bit and give us a better seed. A win is a better than a loss tonight, especially when you consider momentum going into the next game.”
New Boston: 9-9-12-13 – 43
Green: 9-9-10-12 – 40
New Boston: 15 FG, 2 3PT (Whitley, S. Oiler 1), 7/11 FT. Scoring: L. Oiler 16, Whitley 11, S. Oiler 9, Hickman 5, Easter 2
Green: 14 FG, 3 3PT (Kimbler 3), 9/14 FT. Scoring: Kimbler 17, Brown 12, Sweeney 8, Blevins 2, Johnson 1
Reach Jacob Smith at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930, by email at email@example.com, or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT