Behind the strong play of posts Jamika Parker and Julie Spencer, the W.F. West girls basketball team came away with a 55-36 non-league victory over White River on Saturday night in Buckley.
Parker, a 6-foot-3 senior, used her lanky body to pose problems for the undersized Hornets on both ends of the court. She finished with 13 points, 13 rebounds, two steals and three blocked shots, limiting White River’s ability to successfully attack the basket.
With Parker occupying the Hornets’ tallest players, Spencer, a 6-1 sophomore, was freed up to score a game-high 19 points while often going against players 3 inches shorter. She also coralled 12 rebounds and had two steals.
“Obviously that’s our bread and butter,” W.F. West coach Henri Weeks said of his twin towers. “Not only are they big, but they’re skilled and they work well off of each other. They’re so used to each other, they know what the other is going to do in certain situations.”
Although W.F. West finished with a commanding final score, that was far from the case in the first half. Both teams traded baskets throughout, with the Bearcats clinging to a two-point halftime lead.
In the second half, though, W.F. West opened it up. The Bearcats consistently made their shots and left the Hornets with nothing but tough looks from outside. W.F. West’s biggest lead was 21, coming with 0:29 to go in the game.
“We were getting a few breakdowns on our defense,” Weeks said, analyzing the first half. “We have an offense we can run against a zone or a man, so we kind of went to that a little bit more in the second half. Just minor adjustments, but the girls really stepped it up.
“Coming out of (Christmas break), we practiced Monday through Wednesday, played Thursday, practiced yesterday and played today. We have a lot of those six-day weeks, so they’re tired. I felt like they really came to play and stepped up their game today.”
Senior Kennedy Hobert led White River with 11 points and seven rebounds.