The Walker Valley boys fought through a rough first half, scoring only three points in the second quarter before revving it up a bit in the second half Wednesday night in “The Stable.”
Brandon Crews, who made good on three 3-pointers in the first quarter, came through with three more in the fourth to lead the Mustangs to a 46-41 win over the Red Raiders of Baylor.
Crews finished with a game-high 18 points and recorded all six Walker Valley 3-pointers. Korn added 13 to the win.
Walker Valley girls basketball coach Jessica Stone was reasonably pleased with the defensive performance by the Lady Mustangs against Baylor. Offensively? Not so much.
“I don’t have a problem with how we played defensively. I thought we played hard. Defensively they did everything we asked them to do,” Stone said after the 42-36 loss to Baylor Wednesday night in “The Stable.”
“We just couldn’t get into the flow offensively. It’s hard to come off an emotional high and turn around and play again the next day. I thought they did better this game than they did coming off the Bradley game,” Stone added.
RED RAIDERS 41
The Mustangs sputtered a bit early against the Red Raiders, but behind the long-distance strikes from Crews and baskets from Lukas Korn and Logan Melton found themselves out front at the end of the first quarter.
“Baylor is a good team. That’s why I like to play them because we know it’s going to be a good game every year. We needed something like this after last night,” Williams said speaking of the Mustangs’ Tuesday loss to Cleveland. “We didn’t play well and I didn’t have them prepared. I thought tonight they bounced back. It shows what kind of young men they are. A lot of teams would lay down, but we came out and shot today and had a good talk. The guys said talk is cheap and they wanted to come out and play hard tonight, and they did.”
Austin Harwood scored the only field goal and Lukas Korn hit the only free throw for Walker Valley in the second quarter as the Mustangs struggled from the field. Baylor’s 8-0 run lifted the Raiders to a 22-16 lead at halftime.
“We had to change the tempo a little bit; that’s when we came out pressing a little bit in the second half. We decided we had to do something to change it up,” said Williams. “They are patient on offense and they make you play their kind of game. We still didn’t score a lot of points, but I thought we were patient as well. We took some good shots tonight and the guys shared the ball.”
The press paid dividends for the Mustangs defensively in the third forcing the Red Raiders out of their first half rhythm. Korn opened with a reverse layup and helped out with six points from the free-throw line to pull the Mustangs within one point at 28-27 at the end of the quarter.
Crews lifted in another 3 to open the fourth to make it 30-28 in favor of Walker Valley. Minutes later back-to-back Crews 3-pointers knotted the score and put the Mustangs on top 38-35. A putback by Bryce Nunnelly gave Walker Valley a five-point lead with 2:07 left to play.
The Raiders closed the gap to two points before Korn lofted in a short jumper to secure the Walker Valley lead. From there the Mustangs closed out the night from the free-throw line. Baylor scored once more with a final 3 to make the final score 46-41.
“Brandon hit some big shots for us. Once we were able to get ahead we were able to make them come after us instead of us going after them,” said Williams.
LADY RED RAIDERS 42,
LADY MUSTANGS 36
Offensively, the Lady Mustangs struggled for four quarters against Baylor. After an eight point first quarter, the Walker Valley girls managed only six more in the second and trailed 21-14 at the break.
Falling behind by 12 with just over three minutes left in the third, the Lady Mustangs found enough offensive thrust to cut the Baylor lead to 30-24.
The Lady Red Raiders opened it back to a nine point lead early in the fourth before back-to-back 3s from Kat Alomar and Victoria Jones cut it to 33-32. The Lady Mustangs pulled within a single point three more times before Baylor took advantage of two Walker Valley turnovers to go up 40-36. The Lady Mustangs missed a 3-point try with 10 seconds left and Baylor closed out the win from the free-throw line.
“We couldn’t get much going offensively. Some of our best shooters could not hit a 3 and we missed three or four layups,” said Stone. “But, they are still confident and we are still confident and we still feel good. We have East Hamilton Friday. We will come in tomorrow and work for an hour or so and keep our heads up.”
LADY RED RAIDERS 42, LADY MUSTANGS 36
Baylor 15 6 9 12 — 42
Walker Valley 8 6 10 12 — 36
Baylor (42) — Kaliegh Clemons 13, Abby Hubert 11, Looper 8, Long 6, Huckabay 4, Simpkins, Smith, Popp, McMahan.
Walker Valley (36) — Jones 9, Macon 6, Mowery 6, Alomar 6, Griffith 4, P. Davis 3, Spann.
3-point goals: Baylor 2 (Looper); Walker Valley 5 (Jones 3, Alomar, Davis).
Records: Baylor 12-6; Walker Valley 9-5.
MUSTANGS 46, RED RAIDERS 41
Baylor 10 12 6 13 — 41
Walker Valley 13 3 11 19 — 46
Baylor (41) — Amedeo Guissani 14, Clendenen 7, Maize 5, Lupas 4, Seaberg 4, Riggins 3, Jump 2, Upshaw 2, , Brogdon.
Walker Valley (46) — Brandon Crews 18, Lukas Korn 13 L. Melton 5, Nunnelly 5, Harwood 2, Swafford 2, Jones 2 Herd.
3-point goals: Baylor 6 (Guissani 3, Clendenen, Maize); Walker Valley 6 (Crews).
Records: Baylor 9-4; Walker Valley 9-6.