By Tommy Keeler Jr.
WOODSTOCK --Central girls basketball coach Mallory Skarupa-Minster may have been a little concerned when her team got into a little early foul trouble against Stonewall Jackson, but she had no reason to be.
With top scorer Katelyn Poston on the bench most of the first half, her teammates responded. Central was able to slowly pull away in the first half en route to a 52-24 non-district girls basketball victory.
"Overall, as a team effort [this was our best win]," Skarupa-Minster said. "We've seen bits and pieces along the way, but as far as overall best team win, I'd say it's probably the best team win so far."
Poston picked up two quick fouls in the first four minutes, and a third early in the second period, and had to sit on the bench.
Central senior Sydney Plum helped pick up the Falcons' offense with eight first-half points and also took over at point guard for Poston.
"When she's not in usually I have to be the point guard," Plum said. "And it's kind of nerve-wracking since that's not where I usually play. But, I've learned from her, so I learned from the best."
The Falcons (6-2) also played most of the half without starter Rebecca Truban, who also had three quick fouls.
The Generals (0-7) struggled throughout the game to find any offense. They made only three shots in the first half, and shot 13.6 percent from the field (3-for-22) and trailed 23-7 at the half.
"I thought that in the first half we had several shots that were in and out and didn't go in," Stonewall Jackson coach Jeff Burner said. "You're busting your neck on defense to stay in it, and then even when you're doing that they're creeping out and they're creeping out. And you didn't really play that bad, but it gets in your head."
The Generals made back-to-back baskets to start the third period and cut the lead to 23-11, but then Poston took over for the Falcons.
The Central senior point guard scored 11 of her game-high 20 points in the third period to put the game out of reach.
"I was a little mad, so I had a little fuel," Poston said with a laugh. "The second half is usually when I'm able to [score more], so that was great that I was able to do that tonight."
All but one player scored for the Falcons. Emily Jordan led the Generals with eight points.
"In general, we've got to hit some shots and start believing in ourselves a little bit," Burner said. "I think that's the biggest thing is, I don't think all our kids believe in themselves. That's a tough thing. Some of it comes back to basketball experience. When you don't play you don't know how to handle situations. So we're trying to teach them situations as were doing all this. In basketball, if you try to wait to see what happens it's too late."
Poston had four steals and three assists to go with her points for the Falcons. Tamra Scott had nine points, and Plum had eight points and five rebounds. Brooklyn Pumphrey had five rebounds and three assists, Truban had one point and three assists and Deleah Payton had two points and five rebounds for Central.
Skarupa-Minster said it was a good win, but the team needs to have better practices if they want to go far this season.
"We know were capable of much more, we've got to bring the same intensity that we bring into our games into our practices if we want to reach that next level," Skarupa-Minster said. "They know it, we know it. If we want to beat Clarke County, and we want to be playing into March, we've got to raise the intensity level in practice and get after it."
Contact Assistant Sports Editor Tommy Keeler at 540-465-5137 ext. 168, or firstname.lastname@example.org Follow on Twitter @tkeelernvd