High school girls basketball

Woodcreek girls beat hosts to claim Whitney tourney

Lady Timberwolves top Whitney in Wildcat Invitational final
By: Kurt Johnson, Press-Tribune sports editor
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After struggling early against a solid Whitney High School press, the Woodcreek girls basketball team put together a strong performance in knocking off the host team 50-35 to take the Wildcat Invitational title on Saturday in Rocklin. The Lady Timberwolves started slowly in the title game, but found their rhythm midway through the first quarter, gradually building a lead before controlling the second half behind the efforts of three all-tournament performers. Whitney got off to a quick start Saturday as five early points from senior forward Danielle Leach helped the Lady Wildcats jump to a lead. Sophomore guard Joleen Chanco led the Woodcreek offensive resurgence, scoring six of her 14 points in the opening stanza to wake up her slow-starting squad. Whitney struggled from the free-throw line all night long, and its difficulties at the charity stripe kept it from getting back into the game despite a number of runs at the Woodcreek advantage. For the Lady Timberwolves, turnovers were the achilles heel, and the giveaways led to a low-scoring second period as the teams headed to intermission with Woodcreek leading by a 19-14 count. Woodcreek held Whitney to just two field goals in the third period as it began to move away from the Lady Wildcats. Senior point guard Casie Tingley settled down nicely for the Lady Timberwolves, while junior forward Jennifer Judge found some space and scored five points in the quarter. The Whitney scoring in the third came predominantly from senior Teagan Lebeau, who was on the mark from behind the three-point arc. The Whitney point guard drilled one trey in the third and two more in the fourth to provide some offense to the Lady Wildcats, who were unable to keep up down the stretch. The fourth quarter scoring was spread around nicely for Woodcreek, with Tingley scoring five points and Chanco adding four, while five other players lit the scoreboard in a 20-point stanza for the Lady Timberwolves. Three-point buckets by Lebeau, who hit two, Kristine Lynch and Kristina Fahey provided most of the Whitney scoring in the final eight minutes, but Woodcreek dominated the glass and pulled away for the win. “We played a good, solid game down the stretch,” Woodcreek coach Ray Beck said. Whitney reached the final with impressive wins over Pioneer (56-22) and Douglas, from Nevada (51-38) and was led by Lebeau and fellow all-tourney standout Paige Transue, a junior forward, who struggled to get anything going offensively on Saturday but did manage to pull down eight rebounds. Woodcreek (5-0) beat Chico and El Dorado in the early rounds to reach the final. On Saturday, all-tourney selection Chanco led the way with her 14 points, while Judge, the tournament MVP, scored nine of her 13 from beyond the arc. Tingley was also selected to the all-tournament team for her leadership at the point. Woodcreek’s dominance on the glass was led by senior forward Chelsea Green, who snared 12 boards, while junior forward Cara Jones ripped down seven caroms and senior Amanda Kaschmitter added six.