The Central Valley girls basketball team had Greater Spokane League-leading Gonzaga Prep’s attention Tuesday.
The defending league-champion Bears were coming off big wins over Lewis and Clark (66-57) and University (60-55).
The visiting Bullpups stopped the Bears in their tracks, though, pulling away to a 66-52 decision in GSL action.
“We knew they were going to play hard,” G-Prep senior Tia Presley said. “They played well. They fought back, but we found a way to pull it out with big numbers in the end.”
G-Prep (12-1, 11-0 GSL) opened its biggest lead at 33-17 after post Hannah Murray began the third quarter with a basket.
The Bears (5-8, 4-7) slowly chipped away, using two free throws from Brooke Gallaway to pull within 40-35 at the end of the quarter.
Then junior guard Katie Estey buried a 3-pointer for CV to open the fourth period, trimming the Bullpups’ lead to 41-38.
The Bullpups outscored CV 25-15 over the final 7:15. And when the Bears were forced to foul, G-Prep made 11 of 13 free throws in the final 4:55 to keep the Bears at bay.
Some of G-Prep’s best offense came in the fourth quarter.
“When they were making runs on us, we came down and ran our sets real well,” G-Prep coach Mike Arte said. “That’s probably the best that we’ve executed our sets. I thought the girls kept their composure when they were making runs.”
Coming up big multiple times were Presley and junior guard Lindsay Stockton. Presley finished with a game-high 21 points. She jumped over Crystal Lee of CV to fifth all time in overall career scoring (1,408) with another former CV standout, Emily Westerberg (1,460), in her sights.
Presley also had a game-high 12 rebounds to go with four steals and four assists. Stockton had 18 points and seven rebounds.
G-Prep outrebounded CV 28-18.
“We just didn’t hit the boards as well as they did,” CV coach Freddie Rehkow said. “Tia almost outrebounded us by herself.”
G-Prep did an outstanding job defending CV junior Brooke Gallaway in the first half, holding her scoreless on 0-of-5 shooting. In the second half, though, Gallaway finally found open spots, finishing with a team-high 15 to go with eight rebounds.
What probably hurt CV more in the first half than not having any scoring out of Gallaway was the way the half ended. G-Prep used an 8-0 surge in the final 90 seconds to take a 14-point lead into intermission.
“We thought we played excellent in the first half, especially in our transition,” Arte said. “We pushed the ball really well and got some nice looks.”
CV finished with 20 turnovers. In the win against LC, the Bears had just nine.
“That’s a big difference,” Rehkow said. “As I tell the girls, it’s the little things.”
Lewis and Clark 47, Mead 42: The Tigers (10-2, 9-2) limited the turnovers (nine) at home to remain two games behind G-Prep.
The Tigers also got to the free-throw line where they made 17 of 21 to Mead’s 5 of 10.
Devyn Galland led LC with 21 points, including 9 of 10 foul shots. Teammate Hailey Hendricksen had 13 points and 12 rebounds.
Taylor Ingebritsen led Mead (7-6, 5-6) with 10 points.
Shadle Park 49, University 41: The Highlanders (10-3, 9-2) stayed tied with LC in second place with a win over the visiting Titans (6-7, 5-6).
Chelsea Chandler led Shadle with 17 points and Aleisha Hathaway had 10 rebounds. Amy Thorton led U-Hi with 13 points and 10 rebounds.
Ferris 59, Mt. Spokane 47: The Saxons (3-9, 2-9) had a big first half to pick up their second league win.
The Saxons raced to a 31-16 lead over visiting Mt. Spokane (5-8, 4-8).
Katara Belton-Sharp led Ferris with 23 points and 10 rebounds. She had six 3-pointers. Brooklyn Young led the Wildcats with 14 points.
North Central 58, Rogers 19: The Indians (8-5, 7-4) zipped to a 26-2 lead in the first quarter and then held the visiting Pirates (0-12, 0-11) in the second.
Tara Van Weerdhuizen led NC with 16 points, 10 rebounds and five blocked shots. Riley Holsinger added 14 points, seven rebounds and five assists.