The Lady Huskies nursed a slim three point advantage after one quarter of action as the Huskies led 11-8 after the opening period of the game. Momentum quickly swayed in the Huskies advantage as an offensive explosion gave the Huskies a 32-15 lead after intermission. The Huskies continued to dominate the Eagles in the third quarter as they were able to increase their lead to 28 points as the Huskies surged ahead to a 50-22 point lead after three quarters of play.
In the fourth quarter, the Huskies prowess on the basketball court continued as the Lady Huskies began to put up an offensive showcase over the Eagles and soared to a 63-33 victory over Wilkes Central and advanced to the championship game of the MVAC Tournament.
Kim McNeil led all scorers for the Huskies with 16 points. Larken Mikeal chipped in 12 points, Mallory Clay added 9 points, Shelly Barker had 8 points, Kelly Hudler contributed 7 points along with seven rebounds, Caitlin Elliot, Mariah McVey, and Kaitlin Smith had 2 points, and Ariel Farmer rounded out the scoring for the Huskies with one point. On the other side of the ball, Erin Koon from Wilkes Central led all Eagles scorers with 6 points.
Lady Huskies fall in title game
This past Saturday, the Lady Huskies basketball team attempted a feat the program has not accomplished since the 2004-05 season; win the Mountain Valley Conference Tournament. After defeating the Eagles of Wilkes Central, the Lady Huskies advanced to the championship game to face the tournament’s host school and top seed North Surry Greyhounds.
North Surry commanded the tempo and momentum early on in the contest as the Lady Greyhounds went on an 8-0 run midway through the first quarter and closed out the opening period with a 12-7 advantage.
Although the Huskies struggled early on in the contest, they rebounded nicely and rallied to take a lead late in the second quarter. Thanks to the low post play by Kelly Hudler and Kim McNeil, the Huskies went on an incredible 14-2 run and took a 23-19 lead with only 2:15 left to go before intermission. The first half of play in the championship game was a hard fought and physical affair as both teams combined for 21 first half fouls. The Greyhounds were able to successfully manage the clock as well as the ball and trimmed the Husky lead to just one point as the score stood at 23-22 in favor of the Huskies at halftime.
The Greyhounds opened the second half the same way they had opened up the initial moments of the game by going on a 6-0 run. Before the Huskies could prevent any further damage, the Greyhounds commanded a 37-31 advantage after three quarters of play. The situation became even graver for the Huskies when forward Caitlin Elliot left the game due to an apparent ankle sprain in the closing minutes of the quarter.
Little improved for the Huskies in the final quarter of play as the Greyhounds of North Surry turned up the pressure on the Husky offense and built their lead to 47-33 thanks to a 10-2 Greyhound run with only 5:17 remaining in the contest. Despite the mounting odds, the Huskies refused to throw in the towel and went on a 6-0 run to trim into the Greyhound lead to 49-39 with only two minutes remaining in the game. Although the resourceful nature of the Huskies created new scoring opportunities, it was too little too late and the Huskies fell to North Surry 54-44.
Following the conclusion of the game, Shelly Barker, Kelly Hudler, and Kim McNeil earned All-Conference Honors and Kaitlin Smith and Kim McNeil were named to the Mountain Valley All-Tournament team. This year marked Hudler’s and McNeil third straight year of earning All-Conference Honors, and McNeil was voted the Mountain Valley Runner-Up Player of the Year.
The Huskies headed into the NCHSAA State Playoffs this week with a home game against North Lincoln on Monday evening. North Lincoln concluded the season ranked third in the Southern Piedmont Conference with a season record of 16-10.