The Wood River High School girl's varsity basketball team started the season off with a bang with a 45-37 victory over the Filer Wildcats in Hailey Tuesday evening.
The victory was good news for the Wolverine faithful, who watched their team win only two games all last season.
"We've had two tough seasons, and the girls put in a lot of work this summer," said Wolverine coach Brent Carnduff. "So it was nice to get off to a good start."
Junior post Lauren Morganthaler led the Wolverines in scoring with 13 points, 10 from the field and 3 from the free throw line.
Sophomore post Samantha Engel and junior guard/wing Hannah Ward contributed 9 points each. Both were strong at the free thrown line: Engel hit on 3 out of 4 and Ward scored on 5 of 6.
Collecting points on fouls was key to the Wood River victory. Overall the Wolverines made 15 out of 20 compared to only 12 out of 27 for Filer.
Carnduff was extremely pleased that his team shot 75 percent from the free throw line.
"If we could do that all season we'd be really pleased," he said. "We also out rebounded them, and that's been one of our goals. But we fouled a little bit more than we like."
The Wolverines and Wildcats matched up evenly in a first quarter that ended with a 12-12 tie. But Wood River took over in the second, scoring 15 points to a miserly 5 given away to lead at half 27-17.
Filer edged closer in the third period, which ended with the Wolverines up 33-26. But Wood River held its ground in the fourth, outscoring the Wildcats 12-11 for the win.
"One of the things we've worked on is confidence," said Carnduff. "So we need to get a few more wins so the girls can see that. We're excited about the way it started and we're anxious to get on with the rest of it."
At 1-0, the Wolverines face a busy schedule over the next week. Thursday they hosted Challis, tonight they play in Mountain Home and Tuesday they play in Kimberly.
Lauren Morganthaler 5 3-4 13, Samantha Engel 3 3-4 9, Hannah Ward 2 5-6 9, Casey Vegwert 3 0-0 6, Kristen Miniard 1 2-2 4, Jordan Scanlon1 2-4 4. Totals: 15 15-20 45.