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Archrival varsity girls basketball teams from Beddingfield and Fike turned to a display of throwback basketball in Wednesday night’s rematch in the Fike High gym.
The approach of half-court basketball against zone or fairly stationary defenses worked well for Fike in a 56-27 nonconference victory against a Lady Bruins squad that barely showed the first half.
Beddingfield of the 2-A Eastern Plains Conference managed only two points in each of the first two quarters in falling behind 25-4 at intermission.
In its final appearance before the holiday break, the Lady Golden Demons bounced back from Tuesday night’s lopsided loss to 2-A unbeaten Farmville Central to improve to 6-3.
With a scheduled home game against D.H. Conley on Dec. 21 canceled because of Conley’s commitment to a holiday tournament, Fike next sees action against archrival Hunt on Wednesday, Dec. 26, in the semifinals of the Farris & Farris Holiday Tournament at Beddingfield High.
The second loss to the Lady Demons left Beddingfield at 0-6. The Lady Bruins oppose Smithfield-Selma on Thursday.
“We wanted to sit back and take away the big girl (Beddingfield’s 6-foot-3 junior Makayla Everette,” head coach Jeff Nelson said in explanation of Fike’s defensive stance. “We tried to limit her touches and not give her really good looks.
A factor in that scheme was Fike 6-3 senior Ashleigh Sage.
“There was a limited focus on our matchup,” Sage explained, “but I thought I played well. I had to keep boxing out, keep getting rebounds and not let her get touches.”
Everette, Beddingfield’s leading scorer, went scoreless the first half before finishing with a team-high 10 points.
“She didn’t have a good game,” Beddingfield head coach Debra Pegram said of Everette. “She tried to assert herself a little more in the second half, but she’s got to understand she has to do that from the time she walks onto the floor.”
Junior guard Brikayla Whitaker and junior KuShiyah Williams, effective on the offensive backboard, triggered Fike to a 11-0 start. Six minutes had elapsed before Beddingfield scored on senior Tydaisha Worsham’s drive.
The Lady Bruins failed to score in the second quarter until junior Aa’Niyah Sherrod connected on a putback in the final 40 seconds.
Everette opened the second-half scoring with her first field goal as the Lady Bruins matched Fike’s 15 points in the third quarter.
“We played a little bit better,” Pegram said. “But I think, sometimes, I play harder defense from the sideline than some of the girls do on the floor.
“Regardless, you can do three things — rebound, hustle and play great defense. We are struggling to do all three. We are inexperienced, young and small, and that’s not a good combination.”
Fike’s lead crested at 29 points — 54-25 on freshman Jada Lamm’s 3-pointer and the final score on junior Syniya Artis’ bucket inside.
Whitaker paced Fike with a game-high 18 points, while senior Jah’Asia Pernell celebrated her birthday with a solid performance that included eight points.
“Much better,” Nelson assessed Fike’s performance. “The first half was one of our better defensive halves. For most of the night, we did what we needed to do.”
The Lady Demons were eager to put the loss to Farmville Central behind them.
“It felt good to bounce back and get back into the win column on our homecourt,” Sage declared.
Anderson 2, Fuller, Worsham 4, Dudley 3, Cooper, Hunter, Pope, Sherrod 6, Farmer, Best 2, Thomas, Huggins, Everette 10, Shade
Harris 7, Ortiz, Secrest 3, Whitaker 18, Everette 2, Lamm 3, Artis 2, Pernell 8, Sage 6, Williams 7.
Score by quarters:
Beddingfield 2 2 15 8 — 27
Fike 17 8 15 16 — 56