Screaming Eagles top first-place Lady Vikes; New Hanover, Laney girls grab conference wins

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The Ashley girls basketball team avenged two setbacks to Hoggard this season as the Screaming Eagles had four players record double figures in a 55-45 victory on Tuesday night.

Coming off last week’s six-point overtime loss against Topsail, Ashley avenged a 38-point defeat versus the Vikings at this year’s Brogden Tournament to improve to 6-3 in conference and 9-9 overall.  Hoggard slipped into second place in conference, dropping one game back of New Hanover at 8-2 in the division and 17-5 on the year.

Carly Baron. Photos courtesy- Rodney Williams
Carly Baron. Photos courtesy- Rodney Williams

“Our highs are high and our lows have been low this season,” said Ashley Coach Adrienne Gale. “We talked about it last Friday night and hopefully this will energize us to be more consistent down the stretch. Foul shots hurt us last week, but really came up big tonight and I’m just glad the girls spent some extra time working on it leading into tonight. ”

The Screaming Eagles went 25 of 29 from the charity stripe, including 20-for-22 in the fourth quarter. Serenity Williams led Ashley with a team-high 17 points, while Carly Baron was 9-for-10 in free throws and finished with 13 points.

Facing a 29-18 deficit after a 10-0 run by Ashley with three minutes to play in the third quarter, Hoggard made it a two-possession game headed in the final frame. Alani Fisher sparked the push with a pair of foul shots, one steal and closed the 7-2 spurt with a shot from deep in the corner for three points.

Fisher kept the Vikings within striking distance by recording 15 of her 17 points in the second half, but Hoggard struggled collectively as a team on the offensive end of the floor and committed 20 turnovers.

Dana Craig added 12 points for the Screaming Eagles and Lola Lovitt knocked down 10, including a step-back jumper with four minutes remaining to give Ashley its largest lead of the game, 42-29, to cap an 11-0 push.

Alani Fisher.
Alani Fisher.

“We wanted to be aggressive and thought we limited our turnovers for the most part,” said Gale. “You have to love Serenity’s energy. She’s our spark plug and helpful on both ends of the floor. We’re going to make mistakes in pressure situations as a young team, but we’re going to continue to work and build off tonight’s win.

Hoggard was down by five after the opening eight minutes and trailed by a one-possession game at halftime after Baron sank a baseline jumper at the buzzer to give Ashley a 19-16 advantage.

The Vikings look to bounce back at home against New Hanover on Friday. Ashley travels to Laney.

New Hanover 51   South Brunswick 36

New Hanover moved into possession of first place in conference following Tuesday’s action as the Wildcats picked up a 51-36 road win over South Brunswick.

Ayonna Cotton had 15 points and Amani Muhammad chipped in with 14.

New Hanover won its fifth straight to move to 9-1 in the division and 16-5 overall. With Hoggard’s setback, New Hanover now has a one-game lead in the division heading into the rivalry game against the Vikings on Friday.

Laney 41   Topsail 25

Jayda Malone had 14 points and Lexi Melville added 10 as Laney cruised past Topsail 41-25 on Tuesday night.

The Bucs moved to 6-3 in the division and 12-9 overall.

North Brunswick 48     Southwest Onslow 27

Taylor Perkins had 29 points for North Brunswick.

Coastal Christian 41      Cape Fear Academy 36

Abby Parker drained four treys and finished with a game-high 19 points to lead Coastal Christian past Cape Fear Academy 41-36 on Tuesday.