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West Brunswick ran into good team on top of its game in the second round of the Class 3A high school girls’ basketball playoffs.
Bertie jumped out to a 17-5 lead in the first quarter and coasted to a 57-44 victory against the Lady Trojans last Wednesday in Windsor.
“It was a long trip and they were a good team,” said West Brunswick coach Cherry Woodbury. “They picked apart our weaknesses and executed really well. They were clicking. They weren’t missing much at all.”
Tiera Brown, Devona Bond and Yushaith Bridgers scored 12 points apiece and Satora Swain added 11 for Bertie.
The Lady Falcons, the No. 1 seed from the Northeastern Coastal 2A/3A Conference, improved to 18-7 and advanced to the sectional finals.
Sophomore point guard Sheena Suttlemyre scored a game-high 18 points to lead West Brunswick. Senior guard Miranda Jenrette and junior forward Mariah Evans had eight points apiece.
“They were the better team. They were the best shooting team we played this year,” Woodbury said.
“They were so well-disciplined and they obviously had been taught fundamentals well. Every one of those kids had perfect form on their shots. Their defense was tenacious.”
Woodbury said West Brunswick did a good job against Bertie’s half-court and full-court press but did not capitalize often enough at the offensive end.
“Sheena did a great job breaking their press, but when we didn’t get the layups we forced some quick jump shots instead of setting up and running our offense,” she said.
“Defensively, they really tore up our press. We didn’t do a good job of slowing them down.”
Trailing 34-16 at halftime, West Brunswick outscored Bertie 11-10 in the third quarter and 17-13 in the fourth.
“We played a much better second half than first half,” Woodbury said. “We slowed them down and played a lot better half-court defense and took the ball to the basket.”
Bertie went to a box-and-one defense in the second half to limit the touches for Jenrette, the team’s leading scorer. Woodbury said Evans did a good job coming off the bench and being aggressive on offense.
“Bertie was a good team. I told the girls you always hate to lose, but you can stomach it a little better when the team you lose to is a good team,” she said.
“If we had lost Monday night we would have been upset because that was a team we should have beaten.”
West Brunswick, the No. 2 seed from the Mideastern 3A/4A Conference, defeated Washington 54-52 in overtime in Monday’s first round.
The Lady Trojans finished the season with a 14-13 record and earned a share of the county championship. They were 6-19 last season.
“I was proud of them for the season. Our goal was to have a winning record and we finished 14-13. That was big to set a goal like that at the beginning of the year and follow through,” Woodbury said.
“It was a fun season, great group of girls to work with. They work hard and they get along and when you have a team like that the wins are just bonuses. They gave me lots of bonuses.”
W. Brun. 5 11 11 17—44
Bertie 17 17 10 13—57
West Brunswick scoring: Suttlemyre 18, Jenrette 8, Evans 8, White 4, Padgett 3, Winters 2, Clear 1.
Bertie scoring: Brown 12, Bond 12, Bridgers 12, Swain 11, Wilson 6, Perry 4.
Doug Rutter is the sports editor at the Beacon. Reach him at 754-6890 or at email@example.com