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Prep Basketball: East Rowan girls 51, Statesville 28

By David Shaw
dshaw@salisburypost.com
STATESVILLE ó East Rowanís girls basketball team cleaned up its act and was rewarded with a deserving victory.
The Mustangs, fresh off Wednesdayís mess of a game at Carson, were a different team in Fridayís 51-28 NPC win at Statesville.
ěWhen things arenít going well, youíve got to go back to basics,î East coach Danielle Porter said. ěAnd for us thatís playing good defense and taking care of the ball.î
The message was received loud-and-clear by the Mustangs (5-11, 3-5). They took better shots, trimmed their turnover total from 28 to 15 and fled the scene with a much-needed win.
ěComing in we knew if we let this game slip by, weíd have to pay for it somehow,î sophomore Caroline Fry said. ěIím glad we won.î
They won because they riddled last-place Statesville (0-16, 0-8) with high-percentage shooting in the middle two quarters. Taylor Honeycutt drained a pair of 3-pointers and led the Mustangs with 12 points. And because senior Oliva Sabo inched closer to breaking out of her personal Alcatraz with a number of power drives to the basket. ěWhe she does, other teams better watch out,î Porter said.
Then there was freshman Karleigh Wike, who played with the savvy of an upperclassman in her second game since returning from an elbow injury.
ěThe last time I went straight from the doctor to the game,î Wike said after netting eight points. ěI hadnít even practiced. This week we practiced a lot on defense. That was a key tonight.î
It was Wike who helped East turn a tight game into an all-you-can-eat buffet. She opened the second quarter by sinking an eight-foot set shot from the left side. A minute later her putback gave the Mustangs a 13-7 lead ó and the rout was on.
ěI told Karleigh she wasnít going to be able to come back from an injury like that and be able to start clicking right away,î Porter said. ěWeíre trying to get her to drop-step and reverse pivot a little bit and shy away from that little fadeaway she like. She did much better tonight.î
Fry swished a 3-pointer from the right corner that made it 21-10 late in the first half. And when Sabo converted a layup and nailed a 3-ball from the top of the key, East owned 29-14 third-quarter edge. Moments later, with a 12-0 run in the books, the lead mushroomed to 36-14.
ěWe made some good, smart passes that turned into great plays,î Honeycutt said. ěYou could tell we were working together.î
Statesville wasnít. The Greyhounds had 24 turnovers and made only nine field goals. In the second half they went nearly 11 minutes without making a basket.
ěI guess I made too many changes for them,î said SHS coach Todd Jones. ěThings got too complicated for them. It was like we couldnít do anything right.î
With East guard Mallory Drew sidelined with an injury, Jones figured Statesville had a chance to prevail. ěShe put up like 12 points on us last time,î he said. ěThey just had some other girls step up.î
EAST ROWAN (51)ó Honeycutt 12, Fry 9, Wike 8, Sabo 7, Sides 4, Poole 4, Rummage 4, Gullett 2, Lowe 1.
STATESVILLE (28) ó McCord 7, B.Bradley 7, Wilkins 5, C.Bradley 4, Hardig 3, Eller 2.
E. Rowan 9 14 15 13 ó 51
Statesville 7 5 5 11 ó 28

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