Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Wolverines rally past Kimberly 45-42, Cutthroat boys play in Boise

Falling behind early, the Wood River High School girls' varsity basketball team showed mental toughness and rallied for a 45-42 non-conference road win over the Kimberly Bulldogs Tuesday, Nov. 24.

Wood River (4-0) won for the third time in three road games with an 18-11 advantage at the free throw line. Wood River shot 18-for-32 (56%) at the stripe. Hailey's defense also forced Kimberly (1-1) into turnovers that sparked a comeback from a 10-5 first-quarter deficit.

The Wolverines turned it around with a 10-1 second-quarter edge. It represented the 11th time in 16 quarters that Hailey's defense has yielded less than 10 points in a period.

Coach Mendy Benson of Wood River said, "We came out a bit flat, but we had great intensity and defensive effort in the second quarter. It was a physical, tough game, and the girls found a way to win on the road, which was huge.

"We also had a nice presence on the court and some pretty good decisions to end the game. Despite having 22 turnovers of our own, we forced 28 turnovers. It was a key to the 'W'. We also had decent free throw shooting down the stretch."

Sophomore Kaitana Martinez scored 13 points, senior Monica Garceau 12, Cheyenne Swanson 5, Tristin Bowers 5, Alex Lindbloom 4 and Allie Hesteness 2. Kimberly's Alex Pfefferle (three 3-pointers) led all scorers with 22 points.

Tuesday, Wood River traveled to Idaho Falls for a 4A match-up with the Hillcrest Knights (2-2). Hillcrest last played Nov. 20, winning 58-43 at home over 5A Skyline.

Next home game is Thursday, Dec. 3 with the tough Jerome Tigers (4-1). It will be the first Great Basin Conference game of the season for Wood River. Jerome defeated Century 61-48 at home Nov. 24.

Wood River entertains Buhl (1-1) on Saturday, Dec. 5 for a matinee of games starting at 1 p.m. with the freshman game. The junior varsity begins at 2:30 p.m. and varsity 4 p.m.


Cutthroats open cage season in Qwest Arena

The Community School boys' varsity basketball team tipped off its 2009-10 prep season under the bright lights and big stage of Boise's 5,000-seat Quest Arena Saturday night.

As a prelude to the NBA Development League showdown between the Boise Stampede and Reno Bighorns, the exhibition game with the North Star Charter Academy Huskies from Eagle, Idaho was the first-ever meeting between the two Gem State private schools.

North Star Charter, a 2A student enrollment school, rallied in the fourth quarter for a 43-40 triumph over the 1A Cutthroats. Jake Hyde (21 points, 16 in the second half) and Teo Ledesma (13) led the Huskies.

Quick starters, the Sun Valley boys led 35-31 at halftime following a Hail Mary half-court buzzer-beater by junior Dane Inman that somehow found the bottom of the net.

The 50-foot circus shot inspired momentum for a big third quarter run as senior Tanner Flanigan, sophomore Will Brokaw and sophomore Henry Rickbeil all came alive to boost the Sun Valley team to a double-digit lead.

But North Star Charter's deep 16-player roster wore down the Cutthroat squad of seven. The Eagle team outgunned the 'Throats 12-5 in the final period for the 43-40 win.

"It was a great first game for us," said second-year TCS head coach Ed Flory, assisted again by Jim Carkonen. "We're much further along than we were at this same point last year. I was pleased with our low number of turnovers and overall effort for a pre-season game."

Team co-captain and senior sharpshooter Paul Davis not only led the Fish with 16 points, but was the game's leading rebounder with 7 boards.

Referring to the big Boise stage, versatile point guard Davis said, "The depth perception was a little weird shooting in a large arena with no walls behind the basket, but really fun once you got use to it," remarked the versatile point guard.

Sophomore Eli Albarran and first-year freshman Colton Sholtis played key minutes in reserve for the Cutthroats.

It was the very first varsity basketball game ever for the Boise expansion charter school with a K-12 enrollment of 800 full-time students.

"This was a huge night for our new program," said North Star coach Roy Ledesma. "We would very much look forward to coming up to Sun Valley for the exciting rematch."

First Cutthroat home game will be with Magic Valley Christian Academy of Jerome in a 5 p.m. tip-off at the Fish Tank in Sun Valley on Thursday, Dec. 10.

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