Once again, the Westhill girls basketball team found itself in a larger spotlight when it faced Bishop Grimes Saturday night as part of the Hoops For the Hospital Classic at SRC Arena.
And the Warriors responded in a big way, ending the state Class B no. 14-ranked Cobras’ eight-game win streak by playing strong defense from start to finish and prevailing by a score of 55-23.
Even with an 11-2 record and no. 17 state ranking, Westhill had found it difficult to start out well in games, or close them out. Here, though, the Warriors did both against a Grimes side it had to rally to beat 48-44 back in December.
From hot shooting on one end to a zone defense that frustrated the Cobras, everything went right for Westhill in the first half. Among other things, Grimes did not even get a field goal in the second quarter as the Warriors stretched out its lead to 35-14.
Even though it was in total control, Westhill did not let up, even shutting out Grimes in the fourth quarter long after the outcome was settled.
Sam Peebles, with 18 points, nearly matched Grimes by herself, with fellow senior Anna Ross gaining 15 points and Mary Kate Washburn adding eight points. Jordan Vaught was the Cobras’ top scorer, earning just nine points.
To some degree, Westhill could thank Marcellus for wearing Grimes out.
Two nights earlier, the Mustangs were on the brink of beating the Cobras, only to get caught at the very last moment of regulation and losing a 75-69 overtime classic.
Leading by three, 60-57, with four seconds left in the fourth quarter, the Mustangs saw a missed free throw at the front end of a one-and-one chance give Grimes a slim chance.
With Vaught who was enjoying a big night, well-covered, Teresa Shattuck had to go herself. From well beyond the 3-point arc, Shattuck fired just as the buzzer sounded. Whether the shot got off in time, it fell, and was called good, tying it at 60-60.