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Prep Basketball: Central Cabarrus routs West girls

By Mike London
mike.london@salisburypost.com

MOUNT ULLA — Folks following the South Piedmont Conference girls game via Twitter were sure they were seeing a long series of typographical errors, but it really happened.
Central Cabarrus’ girls beat West Rowan, 89-34, on Friday in the West gym. That’s a 55-point margin, one of the most lopsided losses since West opened the doors for students in 1959.
“We were expecting a very close and tough game,” said Central star Mahaley Holit, who nearly outscored the Falcons by herself with 33 points. “West just killed us in this gym last year (the Falcons won 72-33) and we knew they still had some of the same players. Coach told us we had to come out quick, and that’s what we did.”
West has two starters back from last season’s SPC champs, forward Egypt Alexander and guard Mary Sobataka, but the Falcons (2-2, 0-2 SPC) never knew what hit them. They were down, 20-2, after four minutes and never made a stand against a tidal wave of Central layups, stick-backs and 3-pointers.
Central (6-1, 4-1 SPC) easily would’ve topped the century mark had the running-clock mercy rule not come into play very early in the third quarter with the Vikings rolling, 62-22.
“We’re small, but we’re fast, and we have to play at a fast tempo,” Central coach Brandon Blalock said. “This was just a night when our girls played hard from the very start and they executed what we wanted to do. We pressured on defense and we pushed it on offense.”
Miyanah Pruitt made a 3-pointer for the Falcons late in the first quarter, but West was still down 31-9 after eight minutes.
West needed two free throws from Alexander to crawl within 54-22 at halftime.
“We were really concerned about 23 (Alexander) and 3 (Sobataka),” Blalock said. “We did a good job on them.”
When Central opened the second half with a blistering 10-0 run fueled by more pressure defense and Elanna Peay’s vigorous rebounding, the margin grew to 40 points, and the running clock was triggered.
Holit, who is headed to Hampton, entered the game averaging better than 24 points, while Peay averages 14 rebounds.
The difference this season is they have more help than in the past.
“We’ve got three or four good ballhandlers this year and some good freshmen,” Blalock said. “Teams have always tried to force the ball out of Mahaley’s hands, but we’ve got a lot more options now.”
In the fourth quarter, Holit kept scoring at will, and the Vikings’ lead kept swelling.
“This may have been our best game,” Holit said. “We’ve got so many people scoring that it’s not like teams can just play box-and-one on me now. And we had good effort tonight from everyone throughout the game.”
The springy Peay had 18 points and 17 rebounds. Guard Casey Rowdon scored 10.
Alexander led the Falcons with 13 points, with nine coming on free throws in the second quarter. Freshman Abigail Wilson scored nine.
Central’s only loss was to unbeaten Hickory Ridge. Holit, who has more than 1,500 career points, didn’t play in that game.

CENTRAL (89)
Holit 33, Peay 18, Rowdon 10, Miller 9, Brown 6, Raztloff 5, Tate 4, Van Dyke 4.

WEST (34)
Alexander 13, Wilson 9, Hillie 7, Pruitt 3, Poole 1, Robinson 1, Sobataka, Connolly, Blabon, Fesperman.

C. Cabarrus 31 23 20 15 — 89
W. Rowan 9 13 6 6 — 34

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