ARMA — A competitive and constructive day of girls’ summer league basketball at Northeast High School saw the Vikings split a pair of games on Tuesday, winning 32-12 against Uniontown before losing 34-25 against Parsons.
VIKINGS DOWN EAGLES
Northeast wasted no time in taking control of the opening contest, as the Vikings jumped out to an early 15-0 lead en route to a 20-point victory over Uniontown.
“We just got back from a camp at KU and went 0-4 against some pretty solid teams, but I felt like we really grew up,” NHS head coach Scott Post said. “So I was really interested to see if we were going to bring it again. We got better after every game at KU, so that was my challenge to them today and they really did just that. The thing that I liked the most about today and in this first game was the amount of effort that was put forth. I was really pleased with the effort tonight.”
Emily Watson sparked the Vikings’ offense with back-to-back buckets to begin the contest, which was the first of 10 points for Watson in the 15-0 run.
The 15-0 run also included five points by Madison Walker.
Uniontown ended the dry spell with a 3-pointer, but the Vikings responded with five consecutive points to increase the lead to 20-3.
The Vikings’ five points came via a pair of layups from Walker and Haley Claffey and a free throw by Jaidan Davis.
The Eagles scored again at the one-minute mark in the first half, before Watson got the two points back for NHS on a layup to take a 22-5 lead into halftime.
Northeast didn’t let up in the second half, as Liz Toms added four points to the Vikings’ lead with a pair of layups to make it 26-5.
The Vikings outscored the Eagles 6-5 in the final 10 minutes of the contest — with two points apiece coming from Walker, Davis and Amber Claffey — to earn the win.
Walker and Watson were the high scorers, each pouring in 12 points apiece.
PARSONS WINS BATTLE OF VIKINGS
Game two didn’t go as well for the Northeast Vikings, but they held their own against a bigger school in the 34-25 loss.
“Coach Cook has things moving in the right direction,” Post said. “He’s a good guy and a good coach. I know while playing at their level, they won less than 10 games last year, but he’s got a young and very talented squad. We were kind of fortunate tonight that they didn’t have any extra players. I think they also had a starter that wasn’t able to make it, which helped.”
Parsons came out firing with an 11-2 run to begin the contest, but NHS climbed back in it with back-to-back layups by Watson and Walker to cut the deficit to 11-6 in the opening minutes of the first half.
Northeast continued to battle, answering a 6-0 run by Parsons with an 8-2 run to come to within 19-14 at the two-minute mark of the first half.
The 8-2 run was highlighted by five points from Haley Claffey and included a layup by Bethany Wyland and a free throw added on by Watson.
Parsons scored three points to end the first half and three more points to begin the second half to make it six consecutive, before Watson sparked a 9-2 run by Northeast with a mid-range jumper to narrow the gap to 27-23 with five minutes left in regulation.
Watson scored six of the nine points in the run and Haley Claffey added a 3-pointer.
Parsons kept the lead safe by outscoring NHS 6-2 in the closing minutes to seal the win.
Watson was the leading scorer with 11 points and Haley Claffey came in close behind with 10 points.
Northeast will take on Erie at 6 p.m. and St. Paul at 8 p.m. on July 6 in Arma.
— Jordan Buckamneer is the sports editor of the Pittsburg Morning Sun. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @jbuckamneer.