By Tera White
Mound Westonka girls basketball opened the season with two away games and showed that they could kick in their intensity for the second half of the game. Although there were no White Hawks victories, Westonka ended up with two close games.
The first game of the season was at Delano on Nov. 28. The White Hawks were down by eight points at half and came back strong from the locker room in the second half. Westonka closed in on the lead by hitting shots and holding the Tigers scoreless for more than nine minutes.
With two minutes left and the White Hawks trailing 25-27, senior co-captain Makenzie Anderson hit a 3-pointer to take the lead, 28-27. With less than a minute to go, Delano answered with a basket, and the White Hawks were not able to hit another shot, losing 28-29. Junior Jennifer Schiable led with 12 points, followed by senior co-captain Abby Wharram with seven and Anderson with five.
Dec. 2 brought the White Hawks to Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted (HLWW). Westonka trailed at half 22-26 against the quick and scrappy Lakers, but coming out for the second half, the White Hawks were knocking down shots and added 31 points.
With seconds left in the game, junior Maya Thurston hit a free throw, making it 53-55. A foul brought HLWW to the line, and the final score was 53-57. Thurston led the game with 20 points, followed by Schiable with 12 points (and three blocks) and junior Ela Springer with 11 points. Wharram had four steals, two blocks and nine assists.
Westonka has a few home games on the calendar, so plan to come and support them Dec. 5 vs. Southwest Christian, Dec. 7 vs. Blake and Dec. 9 vs. Benilde-St. Margaret’s.
Coach Hiebert’s corner:
Even though we’ve lost our first two games, they’ve been by a total of four points where we had the last shot to either win or tie. We’re a better basketball team overall to this point this season than we were last season. We have five games in the next week and a half against some tough teams, so we’ll have to shoot the ball better and continue to battle defensively to get some wins.