Catholic sharp in win vs. Gilmer

PARKERSBURG — A 22-0 run by Parkersburg Catholic to kick off its Friday night girls basketball game versus Gilmer County gave the host Crusaderettes a big advantage right from the start as PCHS prevailed over the Titans, 71-37, to go to 3-0 on the young season.

Catholic had it all going its way early on, racking up the 22 points in the first minutes of play. Olivia Ullman tallied the initial six points, followed by a Madeline Huffman 3-ball and then Aaliyah Brunny going coast to coast for a layup for an 11-0 beginning.

Madison Ross’ rebound bucket and a Jenna Boice trey from the top of the key followed and soon after, Huffman canned a 3-pointer before two Brunny hoops to complete the opening spurt.

Gilmer, though, did get a basket from Hannah Grove at the 1:48 mark to stop the PCHS run and another Titan field goal by Bayley Wellings at 1:20 made it a 22-4 game after one period of play.

The second stanza was a lot like the first from both sides, as Catholic put up 19 points to just nine for the visitors with PCHS forging leads of 33-7 midway through and then for a 41-13 halftime bulge in its favor.

A 25-8 margin in the third stanza for the Crusaderettes balooned the lead to 45 at 66-21 going to the fourth quarter. Huffman netted 11 points and Ross seven to lead the PCHS charge in the third.

An Ullman three-point play to begin the final period made it a 69-21 spread before Gilmer (0-2) went on a 16-2 run to cut the Crusaderettes’ winning margin down to only 34.

The Titans’ late surge was fueled by both Wellings and Eve Mohr with eight points each.

For the game, Huffman paced the Catholic point-production with 22 points, while Ullman had 15, Ross 11 and Brunny 10. Wellings’18 points topped Gilmer’s scoring.

“Top to bottom, I wasn’t pleased as I wanted to be with our execution in the fourth quarter,” said PCHS head coach Marty Vierheller. “But there was a lot of good stuff we did in the first three quarters.”

He noted too that “for a team that has as much youth as we have, we still have a great window of opportunity to improve.”

Plus, Vierheller “likes our team’s (scoring) balance — I think that’s key for us. And I like the thought that when other teams prepare for us, they really won’t be able to key in on a player or a couple of players because this team is unselfish and doesn’t care who scores, just as long as we score.”