BHS girls win ‘tourney’ title
Special to the Signal
It didn't seem very special on the calendar, but for the Baldwin High School girls varsity and head coach Eric Toot, the games last week were more than just three home games for the Bulldogs.
"We knew it was a big week for us. We were considering the games this week our home tournament, each team we played was a little bit better than the one before and we knew that playing Riley County would be like playing the championship game in the tournament," said Toot.
This busy week for the Bulldogs started on Tuesday with a match-up against Osage City. Baldwin grabbed a hold of the game early and led at the end of the first quarter 22-9. The Bulldogs never looked back and didn't allow their opponents even five points a quarter for the rest of the game, finishing with a score of 71-19. Junior Emily Brown led the team in points and rebounds, with number of 18 and 12, and also batted down seven Osage City shot attempts. Senior Kayla Pringle added 14 points with four of four free-throw shooting and senior Anna Skaggs put up 15 points, eight rebounds and acquired four steals.
"Against Osage City everything came together and we just played hard as a team," said Pringle.
"I felt we played a solid game but we still need to be more consistent on offense," said Toot.
Friday night in the "second round" of the "tourney," the Bulldogs faced off against Gardner-Edgerton. Although Baldwin
trailed early in the game, a second quarter filled with 3-point shots
got the Bulldogs back in the lead and went into half-time with a score of 34-18. After the break Baldwin came out focused
and got right back to business, hitting three more 3s before the end of the game, where Baldwin finished on top, 65-36. Pringle led the team in scoring with 13 points and also grabbed four steals. Junior Kari Garrison contributed 12 points, Brown had 10 points, nine rebounds, seven blocks and four assists. Skaggs had eight points, eight rebounds, and five assists, while senior Katie Martin added another eight points with four assists.
With two recent wins under their belt, the Bulldogs weren't over confident going into their Saturday "championship" game. Baldwin had to compete with the No. 1 ranked Class 3A team and it was a close game all night. After a cl ose first half, Baldwin was ahead 27-22. Although Baldwin led the whole game, the Falcons managed later to once again close the gap to within four after two-technical foul free-throws and a quick bucket on the following inbound play.
But the final score of 65-51 left Baldwin with another victory. Baldwin featured four players in double figures for scoring with Brown putting up 22 points, and Skaggs, Garrison and Martin all adding 10, while junior Kalie Harris had eight. Brown also had seven rebounds, five assists and three steals. Skaggs added six boards, seven assists and four steals. Garrison pulled down seven rebounds and had five assists.
"The game went pretty good. We knew they would be a tough team so we came out strong and things went well for us," said Garrison.
"They played really hard, which is more than a lot of teams have done. It really kept us in check because if we wouldn't hustle back on defense or stay in a defensive stance, they would see it and then use it to their advantage," sai d Skaggs.
Among the impressive numbers this week was Baldwin's shooting percentage. In all three games the Bulldogs were above 50 percent from the field, with 41 of 70 shots made against Osage City, 27 of 45 against Gardner-Edgerton, and 22 of 44 agains t Riley County.
"Overall, I think we are progressing as a team and it is a pleasure to work with such outstanding kids on a daily basis. I thought they played really well for having such a long week of basketball," said Toot.
Baldwin is currently tied at the top of the Frontier League standings with Spring Hill, with both teams owning records of 4-0 in league play. The girls varsity's next action is Jan. 28 at the Wellsville Top Gun Tournament which the Bulldogs won for the first time last year.e?