A second half outpour bolstered the Hilmar High girls’ basketball squad over Ripon in a Trans Valley League bout on Tuesday night.
Ripon held the lead for three quarters, but the Yellowjackets stifling defense dominated the fourth, as they pulled away with a 42-34 victory.
“By the end of the third we started to sense it after getting within three and then up by one,” Hilmar head coach Don Inman said. “It was a great effort from my girls all around.”
It was nothing short of an amazing game for the ‘Jackets defense who held the Indians to only 11-second half points after being down by as many as 10 in the first half.
“We just had to pick it up and play harder and we didn’t let down after being down at half, we just got that lead and held it,” Hilmar’s Kinsey Pettigrew said. “Fast breaks really helped in the second half. It was an essential win for us.”
An impressive effort from Hilmar’s Angelique Souza and Rebecca Sanders in the paint proved to be enough in a night where Ripon was held to under 35 percent shooting from the field, constantly attacking the paint and making it difficult to sink easy baskets.
“All our girls were clicking. Angelique is probably my most athletic kid and made major progress and hustling out there. She has become a very effective player for us, especially in the paint,” Inman said. “Rebecca had some big plays in the paint including that big block that we will remember for a while.”
Pettigrew was able to notch a team-high, 13 points along with seven rebounds and two steals. Dominique Miranda topped out with nine points and six boards.
Val Ewing’s strong effort on defense, the ability to control the ball and score when needed was vital as she added nine points to go with her two steals.
“Our defense is good, we just needed to move the ball on offense a little better and get the baskets in and we did tonight,” Pettigrew said.
Next for the lady ‘Jackets will be a TVL matchup at Modesto Christian with a starting time of 7:30 p.m. Monday.
“We have Modesto Christian on Monday so we will go out there and do the best we can and see how the ball bounces,” Inman said about the upcoming match against powerhouse MC.