Griffins fall to tough Redhawk teams

BLYTHEWOOD – In every way Tuesday night, the Westwood girls’ and boys’ wins over Fairfield Central had the makings of an early season practice game.

Almost every player on all four teams saw some playing time. Almost every Redhawk scored, had rebounds, or both.

And while the Westwood girls dismissed the Griffins 73-22, and the Westwood boys cruised to an 88-38 victory, the Fairfield Central teams also got a good workout.

Tavionna Kincaid (40) and Mikaela Gaines battle for the rebound. | Photos: Leroy Howard

“We played a good team today,” Griffins head coach Amelia Miller said. “We have a lot of good young players, we’re just trying to get better and better. I think we’ll get better and better in every game, I just need to keep them motivated.”

The Redhawks, who played for the upper state championship last season, showed how a motivated team can react.

Unique Drake came off the bench to lead the Redhawks with 12 points, and the backcourt presence of Ja’La Wade and Nyah Leveretter combined for 20 points.

Wade had 10 rebounds to go with her 10 points, and A’laya Scott led all rebounders with 12 boards.

“We felt this was a game where we could get some kids who normally wouldn’t play an opportunity to get some minutes,” Westwood head coach Bauldrick said. “The goal was to continue to keep our rhythm, but also try to rest some legs with our primary kids.”

The Redhawks (7-0) leapt out to a 20-2 first-quarter run and held a 38-11 lead at halftime.

Ja’Mari Frederick attempts the open shot from behind the arc.

Westwood finishes the week at Airport Wednesday and at Spring Valley Friday.

The Vikings, who played for the 5A championship last season, will be a good gage of where the Redhawks are.

“We think that’s gonna be a nice little test for us,” Bauldrick said about Spring Valley. “We’ve had some success so far this season, we’ve played some pretty good teams but none of them the caliber of Spring Valley. We’re not overlooking Airport because they’re a pretty good team, and they’re gonna play hard, and we need to take care of that business first.”

FCHS – 2-9-9-2-22

WHS – 20-18-18-17-73

FC: Belton 8, L. Boyd 7, Kincaid 4, Rice 2, A. Boyd 1.

WHS:Unique Drake 12, Ja’La Wade 10, Nyah Leveretter 10, Frederick 8, Etheridge 7, McCant 6, Scott 6, Simon 5, Marshall 5, Hall 4.


 

BLYTHEWOOD – In the boys’ game, Westwood burst out to a 21-0 lead on transition baskets from Ta’Jay Dunlap, Tyrell Huff, and Russell Jones Jr. J.R. Edmonds’ free throws for the Griffins with less than a minute to go in the first were all they could muster.

The Redhawks closed out the first with a 25-2 advantage and eased into a 40-15 lead at the half.

Both teams went to the bench in the second half. Westwood ran the floor for most of the fourth quarter on a 26-7 scoring run before sitting on the ball in the final minute of play.

Christian Horn (31) goes up against Eli Hunter (12).

Jones led the Redhawks with 16 points. Huff and Mequaje McDaniels had 15 points, and Kendal Wormack had 12.

Just as the girls’ team has been busy, the past couple of weeks have been an intense stretch for the Westwood boys (8-0), including a Thanksgiving tournament in the Bahamas, three games last week and three games this week. The Redhawks travel to Airport Wednesday and at Spring Valley Friday.

“We played hard, our effort is good,” Westwood head coach Ty Baumgardner, in his first year with the Redhawks, said. “but we got to clean up a lot. We haven’t had a lot of practice time, to be honest. We got back from the Bahamas and played three games in four days, and haven’t had a lot of time to practice, but a win is a win.”

Jason Durant, a former Westwood assistant in his first year as head coach of the Griffins, said the Fairfield Central program has a long way to go. The Griffins are off to an 0-6 start after a winless 2017-18 season, but Durant said kids are staying positive.

“The guys are handling it well,” Durant said “They’re progressing, we’re growing every day. Every game is a learning experience for us, and we just want to get better.”

FCHS– 2- 13- 16 – 7 – 38

WHS – 25 – 15 – 22 – 26 – 88

FC: Barbar 9, Quattlebaum 6, Edmonds 6, White 6, Young 5, Boyd 2, Craig 2, Plug 1, Hunter 1.

WHS: Russell Jones Jr. 16, Mequaje McDaniels 15, Tyrell Huff 15, Kendall Wormack 12, Dunlap 9, Green 6, Savage 5, Horn 4, Turner 3, Lewis 2, Farmer 1.

 

 

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