By Joey Keleman
The sectional girls hoops game between the Westlake Demons and the Highland Hornets was a back and forth battle; a game full of ups and downs for both squads. In the end, the Lady Demons would prevail over the Lady Hornets, 56-48.
Leading the attack for the Lady Demons was Monica Fury with 13 points, along with some help from Kelly Laraway with 11 points.
Westlake looked to attack the paint and get to the line early on. The Demons shot 11 free throws, converting less than 50 percent, however. A key component to the Lady Demon’s success was second chance points off offensive rebounds. They racked up a total of eight second-chance opportunities. Westlake ran a man-to-man defense, causing pressure in the backcourt, using traps and double teams to create key turnovers.
Hustle plays kept some possessions alive for Westlake and also created turnovers that led to multiple scoring chances. The Lady Demons swung the ball around, with continuous ball movement, to create open shots for shooters to take high percentage shots. When Highland cut into the Demon lead, a 3-pointer midway through the third quarter sparked the Lady Demons the rest of the second half. The up-tempo attack and energized bench helped Westlake to stay positive. In the end, phenomenal coaching from head coach Chip Weiss, and assistant coach Art Daniels is what seemed to be a key aspect to the Lady Demon victory Saturday afternoon.
“You all are playing with confidence in each other the entire game…never is there a doubt in my mind that we were going to let this game slip away from us,” Weiss told his team during a timeout.
The girls responded very well. After a key timeout call, an “and-1” conversion with 1:54 would seal the Lady Demons victory.
On the other side of the scoreboard, leading the attack for the Lady Hornets was Marlee Profitt and Anna Rose Wiencek each scoring 15 points for the Hornets. The Lady Hornets sought to attack the paint as well. However, turnovers would be the Achilles heel for Highland.
The defensive pressure by the Lady Demons was very affective and Highland could not seem to set up a stable flowing offensive attack. Late, for desperation, the Lady Hornets looked to 3-pointers to cut lead down; however, the shots were not falling. Multiple missed opportunities in the fourth quarter were key to Highland not being able to cut the lead less than 10 points, until there were three minutes left in the fourth quarter.
The fifth-seeded Lady Demons look forward to taking on the 11th seeded Avon Lady Eagles at home Thursday night at 7 p.m.