By: Aaron Pyle
Following the Trojan sweep, Tuesday, Dec. 14, against the Liberal Bulldogs, Girard looked to test their unbeaten streak facing the Galena Bulldogs Friday night.
In the girls’ contest, it was a slow start for both teams as turnovers became prevalent within the first minutes. The Trojans would then very quickly go to their deep bench looking for answers offensively.
Both teams would battle it out in the first quarter trading baskets. The Lady Trojans would then take advantage of their outside game as Gabbi Sands would hit a 3, swinging the momentum in favor of the Trojans.
Galena would stick around though at the end of the first, with a score of 7-9 in favor of the Trojans.
Bench depth played a key factor for the Trojans in the second quarter, as early foul trouble required fresh bodies on the floor. The Girard defense kept the Bulldogs to a minimum in the second as Galena turned the ball over, which in return was giving Girard transition opportunities.
Sophomore Jaada Valley showed off some impressive driving skills throughout the game, with a dazzling Euro step midway through the second.
At halftime, the Trojans would have the advantage, 23-14.
In the third, the Lady Trojans sat with a comfortable lead throughout as sophomore Jaada Valley and senior Gabbi Sands leadership efforts would guide the Trojans. At the end of the third, Girard would lead 34-24.
The story of the fourth quarter for the Trojans was their post play down low to senior Kalyn Flaharty. Flaharty would dominate the Bulldogs down low scoring 8 of the Trojans’ 16 in the fourth.
The Lady Trojans would go on to win 50-42, maintaining their undefeated streak (3-0) while capturing their first CNC victory of the season.
“We’re excited, we have a long ways to go, lots of growing pain are going to happen through the course of this year… but they still came out found a way to win and come out on top,” said Coach Brad Herlocker.
The Lady Trojans had multiple double-digit scorers with senior Kalyn Flaharty and sophomore Jaada Valley both with 10 points. Senior Gabbi Sands followed behind with 9 points.
In the boys’ matchup, Girard faced a tough Galena team with one loss on the year.
The Trojans would push the ball up-tempo in the first quarter as Galena could hardly keep up with Girard’s pace. Senior Dillon Collins would catch fire in the first quarter as well, scoring 7 of the Trojans 13 points.
The Trojans would lead at the end of the first, 13-5.
Senior Caleb Muia would get into early foul trouble in the second quarter which would force Girard to lean towards its bench. But that didn’t slow down the Trojans as Girard forced multiple turnovers then converted those into transition points.
Girard’s stifling defense would help them maintain a comfortable 31-14 lead at the half.
Senior Carter Doherty became the focal point in the third as he was feasting down low for the Trojans. The inside attack for the boys’ team would maintain that large lead as the score at the end of the third was 42-26 in favor of the Trojans.
At one point in the second half, Galena would trail by as much as 20, but with Galena attacking inside and forcing turnovers, they would cut the lead down to 10. Senior Caleb Muia heated up in the fourth scoring key buckets that would ultimately seal the game for Girard.
The boys’ team went on to defeat the Galena Bulldogs 53-39, improving to 3-0 overall with a league record of 1-0.
Senior Caleb Muia and junior Ryder Worrell lead the game in scoring with 12 points each. Senior Dillon Collins would finish the game with 9 points and senior Evan Troike ended the night with 8 points.
Girard will look to continue their unbeaten streak as they travel to Labette County High School to face the Grizzlies, Monday, Dec. 17.