Scoring woes persist for Warriors in loss

By Brad Fauber

STEPHENS CITY — First-year Sherando girls basketball coach Mike Marsh knows the scoring potential that lies within the Warriors’ young roster. Marsh also knows that Sherando just needs to be patient while the Warriors figure out a way to become more consistent scorers.

The Warriors’ early-season offensive struggles continued against visiting Broadway on Wednesday night in their home opener, as the Gobblers picked up a 46-34 win for their second victory over Sherando this season.

Sherando (1-3) hit just 12 of 53 shots (22.6 percent) from the field on Wednesday and turned the ball over 22 times.

“We don’t have that big scorer yet,” Marsh said. “We have four girls who can put 25 [points] up a night. We just haven’t found it yet, and once they get used to the new dynamic of the team then it’ll all start clicking. Right now we’re still searching for that.”

The Warriors’ shooting woes began from the start, as both teams started cold in the game’s opening period. Broadway (2-0) found itself leading just 6-4 after the first quarter, while both teams combined for 10 turnovers in the opening eight minutes.

The Gobblers shot themselves out of the early cold spell in the second quarter, as senior forward Brianna Zook immediately opened the period with a bucket from the low block to push Broadway’s lead to four.

Sherando tied the game at 8-all following two free throws by sophomore Madison Leckie and a basket in the paint by junior Heidi Brown. Five points by Zook sparked a 7-0 run for the Gobblers before the Warriors cut Broadway’s lead to 15-12 following a fast-break layup by freshman Davina Lane, but Broadway slowly pulled away after that.

The Gobblers ended the first half on a 10-3 run to take a 25-15 lead into halftime.

Zook — who was throwing up in the bathroom just prior to the opening tip — had seven points in the second quarter and led all scorers with a game-high 19 points.

“She’s really good. That’s the bottom line. She has great hands. She finishes well against girls bigger than her,” Gobblers coach Bobby Mongold said. “Everybody looks at her 19 points, but she has so many deflections and she reads passing lanes. She just disrupts things defensively even though she’s not the biggest girl in the world.”

Broadway padded its lead in the third quarter despite hitting just two shots from the field in the frame, as the Warriors managed just five points against a Gobblers defense that varied its look between a lot of 1-3-1 and 2-3 zones in an effort to limit Sherando’s drives to the basket.

Sherando hit just 1 of 17 shots from beyond the 3-point arc.

“We prepared for it. We knew they were going to throw some 1-3-1 and we didn’t execute as well as we should have,” Marsh said. “The 2-3 we had seen — they used the 1-3-1 late in the first game and the 2-3 some, and we were pretty confident in both of those. We just didn’t execute as well.”

The Warriors’ lone 3-pointer — a shot from the left wing by Leckie with 6:47 to play in the fourth quarter — cut Broadway’s lead to 38-27 and appeared to give Sherando some life, but the Warriors were unable to cut the deficit to single digits.

“We got down, missed shots early and right now — when you’re not scoring, it makes it pretty tough,” Marsh said. “I think our defense is pretty solid. We played some good defense full court and half. But we had lots of opportunities early and just didn’t convert. We’re getting there, but we’re just not there yet.”

Leckie led the Warriors with 12 points, while Brown added eight points and four blocks for Sherando.

Freshman Faith Funkhouser finished with 14 points for Broadway.

Contact sports writer Brad Fauber at 540-465-5137 ext. 184, or bfauber@nvdaily.com