Roundup: Bobcats finish regular season at 18-2
NILES — The Brandywine girls basketball team wrapped up its regular season with an easy victory over BCS Athletic Conference foe River Valley Monday night.
The Bobcats, who will host the Class C district tournament beginning Monday night, finish the regular season at 18-2.
Brandywine blew out the Mustangs 55-17 after squeaking by Parchment in a BCS Red Division contest last Friday night, 44-40.
In SMAC West Division action Monday night, Niles traveled to Portage Central for a pair of makeup games.
The Vikings boys team was edged by the Mustangs 37-34, while the girls team dropped a 55-23 decision to Portage Central.
Against River Valley, the Bobcats led 21-2 after one quarter and 44-4 at the intermission.
The second half was played under a running clock due to the mercy rule.
Zakiyyah Abdullah led Brandywine and all scorers with 12 points. The Bobcats also got 11 points from Melanie Martinez and six points from Kennedy Byrd.
“Last night’s game we showed great energy from the opening tip and was very happy for Melanie Martinez who had a phenomenal game,” said Brandywine coach Josh Hood. “Leading 44-4 at half was able to get some girls some rest and able to get some valuable minutes for our bench heading into the tournament.”
Brandywine outscored Parchment 17-13 in the fourth quarter Friday night to pull out the four-point victory over the Panthers.
“Friday was a great win at Parchment after trailing by five with 2:30 to go and finding a way to win by four,” Hood said. “With only having five games all season decided by less than double digits, our girls showed great poise and confidence down the stretch.”
The Bobcats led 12-7 after one quarter and 17-14 at halftime.
The two teams were deadlocked at 27-27 heading into the final quarter.
Brandywine’s Nicole Sachman led all scorers with 17 points. Abdullah chipped in with nine points and Byrd eight.
The Vikings and Mustangs were deadlocked at 34-34 with 30 seconds remaining when Portage Central hit a pair of free throws.
Niles had a pair of wide-open looks at the basket, but failed to knock down either shot.
Down 37-34 with 0.5 seconds remaining, the Vikings were fouled on a 3-point attempt, but missed all three free throw attempts.
“Our kids scrapped all night and gave us a chance at a victory,” Niles coach Todd Pawielski said. “Another tough loss, but proud of a lot of the things we are doing.”
Niles was able to hold Portage Central to just 15 second-half points, including three points in the final eight minutes, but could not come away with the victory.
Robert Brown led the Vikings with 16 points and six rebounds, while Austin Brookins had eight points, four rebounds, four steals and three assists.
Brayden Lake finished with six points.
The Niles girls team trailed 22-3 after one quarter and could never catch up to the Mustangs.
The Vikings trailed 29-10 at halftime and 44-17 heading to the fourth quarter.
Alycia Patterson led Niles with 13 points, while Aynslee Myer added five points.