Girls varsity basketball dominates in District-opener

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Girls varsity basketball dominates in District-opener

Senior Claire Baguley’s hot hand fueled her to a game-high 26 points and the girls varsity basketball team to a win in its District-opener. With six made three-pointers, Claire took full advantage of what the defense gave her and paved the way to a blowout win over Greenville 45-25.

“It felt good; I haven’t had a really good shooting night, and three-point shooting really isn’t my game if you watch me play,” said Claire, who also added a steal, 4 rebounds, and 3 assists.

Freshman Theryn Hallock started the scoring a minute and a half into things with a steal and layup for a 2-0 FHC lead. Theryn put up 8 points on the night with two three-pointers of her own. While the first quarter was a bit of a defensive showcase, Greenville mustered a 4-2 lead with three minutes remaining in the first. From there, it was all Rangers.

FHC put up a 10-0 scoring run to round out the first quarter up 12-4, with Claire hitting two dagger three-pointers within 30 seconds of one another for 6 points in the opening quarter.

The Ranger scoring didn’t stop there, as Theryn and freshman Remmie Ingraham got in on the shooting action to sink a three-pointer each, while Claire put in two more from behind the arc in addition to 6 points in the paint. The Yellow Jackets wouldn’t find the basket until there were three minutes left in the half, as Greenville senior guard Adele Kemp put in a layup to snap a 26-0 scoring run from FHC. The Rangers led 32-6 at the break behind Claire’s 20 points.

“It’s about time [we shot well],” head coach Kristina Prins said. “I knew that [Greenville] was going to let us get shots off, but I don’t think they expected us to make that many. The girls played awesome, and that first half was amazing.”

Greenville’s leading scorer, Adele, was held to just 4 points in the first half and 15 total on the night—a low total for this potent offensive threat—thanks to FHC sophomore Brittney Probst.

“I think [Adele] is a really good player; she’s really quick with the ball and a really smart player,” said Brittney, who had 4 points, 3 steals, 2 rebounds, and an assist. “It’s actually really difficult to guard her. I just knew I had to make sure she didn’t get the ball and when she did have the ball to make sure she couldn’t do anything with it.”

While Adele still managed to put up double-digit scoring and was more of a threat in the second half, the points were hard-earned.

“I do think [Brittney shut Adele down],” Prins said. “The score didn’t necessarily reflect that, but Brittney took her completely out of her game. Britt was amazing, and I felt like all around our pressure was awesome.”

FHC hit the third quarter and slowed down offensively. The Rangers had 9 turnovers in the second half and struggled with shot selection. The Yellow Jackets outscored FHC 11-8 in the third, but the explosive first half had the Rangers leading 40-17 after three quarters.

“It’s nice when you have a lead like that,” Prins said. “In the third, I felt like there were a couple minutes where we weren’t taking care of the ball, but we’ll work on that.”

Claire hit her sixth three-pointer of the night early in the fourth, and a layup from sophomore Zoe Lipke off of a hustle play gave the Rangers their only 5 points of the quarter. Zoe, Remmie, and Brittney all had 3 steals apiece on the night, while Remmie led the team in rebounding with 7.

Greenville again outscored FHC in the quarter 8-5, but the Rangers’ hot start was enough to give them a 45-25 win over the Yellow Jackets to advance in District play. With Greenville upsetting FHC just last week, this 20-point win was key for the Rangers’ confidence.

“In that game [where we lost to them], we did not play our best, and we definitely should have came through with the win,” Claire said, “so it felt really good to come out here and not just win but blow them out.”

The Rangers were able to make key adjustments from last week’s loss; FHC’s defense was suffocating and forced many Greenville turnovers while racking up 13 team steals. The Rangers improved the little things on defense, such as help-side and one-on-one defense, and made a big turnaround on offense. While FHC normally struggles against a zone defense, it flourished with hot outside shooting.

“I think we did a good job of applying what we did in practice to the game, and it fueled our momentum,” Claire said. “This was a really good defensively-fueled win tonight.”

The Rangers advance to the District Semifinals to be played on Wednesday, March 6 at 5:30 at Northview against Cedar Springs. FHC is 2-0 against the Red Hawks this season.

“[We need to] play hard, play the defense we played tonight, and just get after it,” Prins said. “I feel like [Cedar Springs] will be a good test, but if we can put two halves together, we’ll be amazing.”

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