By Brackin Lambert
Kiara Wilson embraced her teammates as the clock read zeroes, and Battery Creek overcame a late deficit to defeat crosstown rival Whale Branch, 36-32, on Friday night at the Palace.
Wilson put together a stellar performance, posting 17 points to go along with nine boards and four steals. Sophia Felix put together a second strong outing in a row with eight points, three steals, two assists and a block. Ashante Shaw couldn’t be stopped on the boards racking up a game-high 17 rebounds for the Dolphins.
The Dolphins started off strong as Felix swiped an attempted pass from Kynew Barnwell and laid it in for the game’s first basket. Wilson put up back-to-back jumpers pushing Creek’s lead to six early. Barnwell added to WB’s score by connecting on a couple of 8-footers to cut the lead to two, but Creek found its groove again as the quarter ended.
The scoring was scarce during the opening minutes of the second frame, but Barnwell drove through the Dolphin defense to tie it up at 13. The Warriors outscored the Dolphins 13-3 during the second quarter and went into the half up 10.
Battery Creek came out of the break on fire as Kiara put up a quarter-high eight points and the Dolphins defense was lights out, only allowing the Warrior four points the entire frame. Creek’s defense continued its strong showing in the fourth stanza only allowing the Warriors three points through the first seven plus minutes.
Barnwell fouled Wilson with only six seconds left and she knocked down one of two from the charity stripe. After the Warriors picked up the board and heaved it in, Shaw picked up the loose ball to secure the win. Barnwell scored 15 points to lead the Warriors.