Girls basketball cruises past North Eugene 61-36
It was another win for the Wildcats, as they faced down visiting North Eugene and picked up the W in decisive fashion. Wilsonville once again scored often, and with a myriad of different shooters, and utilized a smothering full court press to minimize the Highlanders offensive effectiveness.
In the first quarter, junior Teagan McNamee got things started with two, and was quickly followed by several of her teammates. Sophomore Kayla Hieb, freshman Sydney Burns, junior Emily Scanlan, and freshman Emily Bishop all got points for the home team. Bishop and Burns were also big on defense in the first quarter, each having several takeaways that contributed to Wilsonville's lead.
Wildcat head coach Justin Duke noted after the game that the defensive pressure that his team brings is exactly what they have been preparing for.
"I think the culture we're trying to breed through our whole program is that our defense leads to our offense," Duke said. "We work on full court defense every day for half of our practice, and it's really starting to show. Those two kids (Sydney Burns and Emily Bishop) being freshman are really starting to gel together and learn what we're looking for, and it's going to be an exciting four years with those two."
At the end of the first quarter, Wilsonville was up 16-8, and picking up steam.
In the second quarter, North Eugene got started with five straight points, but Wilsonville took over once again. Hieb and junior Reese Timm combined for seven points, and senior Jessica Classen drained a basket as well. Junior Cydney Gutridge had four points in the second half, one basket scored on a takeaway thanks to the defensive press.
"Cydney Gutridge plays really well from the point, she really kind of gets us going," Duke said. "She was fighting off the flu tonight, but really proud of the way that she showed up."
"I wasn't feeling too good the last couple of days, so it was a challenge coming in here, and I'm feeling a lot better," Gutridge said. "This win is helpful."
Heading into halftime, the Wildcats controlled the game 30-22.
Gutridge got things started with another basket, and was coon followed by a host of different Wilsonville players. Hieb, McNamee, Bishop, and Timm all added to the ever widening gap on the scoreboard, and at the end of 24 minutes the home team was up 42-30.
In the fourth quarter, Gutridge scored seven points from the top of the key that sealed the deal.
"We asked her to do some different things," Duke said. "I thought in the fourth quarter when we put her at the high post and she knocked down three shots there, that really put the game away. Just kind of that ability to adapt and change as the game closed made the difference for us."
McNamee had four points in the fourth quarter, and Bishop, Burns, and sophomore Brooklyne Waddell helped close the show on the Highlanders. When the final horn sounded, Wilsonville had won 61-36.
The Wildcats followed that up with an equally impressive win against Pendleton to improve to 5-0 on the season. Wilsonville looks to continue that momentum in a non-league matchup against Marist Catholic (4-1) on Tuesday, Dec. 19.