Big 3rd-quarter run lifts Cedar Rapids Washington girls past Jefferson, 80-61

Cedar Rapids Washington head coach Chris James. (Stephen Mally/The Gazette)
Cedar Rapids Washington head coach Chris James. (Stephen Mally/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — His demeanor never changed.

Chris James didn’t raise his voice, just stood on the sideline with his hands clasped behind his back. The Cedar Rapids Washington girls’ basketball coach must have known his team his team had a counter-run on the way.

The Warriors sure did, scoring 16 straight points in the final five minutes of the third quarter to finally put away stubborn Cedar Rapids Jefferson, 80-61, Friday night at Washington.

“I trust these kids,” James said. “Our five starters, in particular, have played a lot of basketball. I knew (Jefferson) would go on a run, because I think they had an 8-0 run in the second quarter. I trust our kids a lot, and I wanted to see how they would respond.”

Jefferson (3-8) trailed by 13 points at halftime but used the hot 3-point shooting of Emily Kuba to get back into the game. She had four second-half treys, the J-Hawks clawing within 46-42.

But Washington (7-3) settled down and settled back in with its press defense. A Sydney Mitvalsky 3-pointer at the buzzer put the Warriors up going to the final quarter, 62-42.

“I didn’t show it outwardly, but, inside, I was thinking ‘We’ve got to do something,’” James said.

“We were really controlling the pace of the game, but we were just hurrying too much on offense,” said Washington’s Caitlin Riley. “I feel like we really slowed things down there offensively but still continued to pick up our energy on defense.”

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Riley had 23 points to lead Washington, one of four double-figure scorers. The Warriors put up a whopping 73 field-goal attempts.

Six-foot-1 center Erica Oler led Jefferson with a game-high 24 points, making 11 of 14 shots from the field. The J-Hawks were done in by 29 turnovers.

“They are a tough matchup for us with five guards,” said Jefferson Coach Jason Edwards. “We had to use different lineups.”

AT CEDAR RAPIDS WASHINGTON

CEDAR RAPIDS JEFFERSON (61): Arianna Hawkins 2-6 6-8 10, Erica Oler 11-14 2-2 24, Lindsey Culver 0-1 2-2 2, Kaylee Donner 3-6 1-2 9, Emily Kuba 4-5 0-0 12, Jenna Griffith 1-7 0-0 2, Den’edra Hodges 0-0 0-0 0, Infinity Watkins 0-0 0-0 0, Grace Jellison 1-2 0-0 2, Alyiah Walker 0-0 0-0 0, Sherry Sir 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 22-41 11-14 61.

CEDAR RAPIDS WASHINGTON (80): Jayla Johnson 4-10 2-2 10, Sammy Mia 8-11 1-2 17, Isa Truemper 2-7 0-0 6, Caitlin Riley 9-17 2-3 23, Vanessa Eniola 6-14 0-0 14, Brittany Postma 2-3 0-2 4, Sydney Mitvalsky 2-9 0-0 6, Skyla Atkins 0-1 0-0 0, Mya Powers 0-1 0-0 0, Sarah Altemeier 0-0 0-0 0, Marek McBride 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 33-73 4-8 80.

Halftime — Washington 42, Jefferson 29. 3-point goals — Jefferson 6-10 (Donner 2-3, Kuba 4-4, Griffith 0-3), Washington 10-27 (Truemper 2-6, Riley 4-9, Eniola 2-4, Postma 0-1, Mitvalsky 2-6, Powers 0-1). Rebounds — Jefferson 32 (Oler 10), Washington 33 (Mia, Riley 6). Total fouls — Jefferson 6, Washington 13. Fouled out — None. Turnovers — Jefferson 29, Washington 14.

l Comments: (319) 398-8259; jeff.johnson@thegazette.com

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