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Huskies hold off Watauga in low-scoring win


Originally published: Nov. 27, 2012
Last modified: Nov. 27, 2012

Steve Behr

WEST JEFFERSON — Watauga's girls' junior varsity basketball team took plenty of decent shots against Ashe in the finals of the Ashe Junior Varsity Invitational Basketball Tournament Saturday night.

Watauga struggled getting any shots to fall. The Pioneers had plenty of chances to put together a run against Ashe but could never put one together in a 24-18 loss to the Huskies.

“We've been averaging over 30 points a game, and we came out here and scored 18,” Pioneers coach Chris Callahan aid. “We had a lot of opportunities.”

Ryan Loflin led the Pioneers with eight points and made the all-tournament team. Brooklin Carroll added six points and was also named to the all-tourney team. The Pioneers were without point guard Rachel Foutz, who sat out with an injured finger.

They couldn't quite lift the Pioneers past Ashe County, which also struggled putting points on the scoreboard. Ashe County took an 8-1 lead in the first quarter, but Watauga rallied to tie the game 10-10 after the Pioneers went on a 6-0 mini-run. Carroll capped the run with a stickback with 3:51 left in the first half.

Watauga would not score the rest of the half, while Ashe closed out the half with four foul shots and a 14-10 halftime lead, though neither team scored in the final 2:11 in the half.

“I don't know if you'd call it a defensive battle, or an offensive struggle,” Ashe coach Mark Cudler said. “Both teams played hard, though.”

Loflin scored all four of Watauga's points in the third quarter, but Ashe scored six and took a 20-14 lead into the fourth quarter. The Pioneers trailed 22-18 with less than two minutes left in the game and got three straight defensive stops but could not convert any into points.

“It's pretty amazing, but I think coaching-wise we get more frustrated than they do,” Callahan said. “They played hard, and I told them I was proud of them. Their effort was great, but sometimes it doesn't go in.”

Watauga returns home Tuesday for a game against Wilkes Central.

“We always try to be better at the end than we are at the beginning, so that's kind of where we are striving to be, to be better in the end then where we are now,” Callahan said.
 
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