Sports

Wildcats nearly upset Meadowdale | Girls basketball

Natalie Fiallos tosses a pass in the Wildcats
Natalie Fiallos tosses a pass in the Wildcats' narrow loss Friday. Fiallos scored nine points in the third quarter to help the Wildcats get back into the game.
— image credit: Jim Waller / Whidbey News-Times

The Meadowdale High School girls basketball team withstood two Oak Harbor rallies to avoid an upset, winning 61-53 at Oak Harbor Friday, Jan. 21.


The Mavericks zipped to a 13-1 lead and it appeared that the winless Wildcats were in for a lopsided loss.

Oak Harbor, however, refused to give in. Fueled by five points from Julie Jansen, the Wildcats went on a 12-2 run to slice the gap to 15-13 at the end of the first quarter.


Oak Harbor kept the momentum, taking the lead 19-18 midway through the second period.


Meadowdale (3-4, 5-9) took off on another run, this time 18-4, to lead 34-22 at half time.


Again, Oak Harbor refused to fold. Natalie Fiallos scored nine points, including a three-pointer at the buzzer, and the Wildcats hit 10 free throws in the third quarter to outscore the Mavericks 22-14.


That cut the margins to four, and the difference was still four, 53-49, after Joanna Leete hit a three with 3:36 left in the game.


That score stood until the Mavericks' Hailey Costello nailed a three with 60 seconds left.


Oak Harbor never moved closer five points in the final minute.


Wildcat coach Jon Atkins called the narrow loss "our best game of the year" and a moral victory.


"We played well, but we were hurt by execution mistakes," he said.


"AnnaBelle Whitefoot played well defensively," Atkins said. "The younger girls are stepping up."


Among the younger players, Jansen, a freshman, finished with seven points and 10 rebounds. Whitefoot, a sophomore, had six points and eight rebounds.


Senior Leete led with 19 points, senior Fiallos had nine, freshman Bryn Langrock six, junior Hayley Lundstrom four, junior Kenna Prosch four and sophomore Jinai Guzman one.


Oak Harbor committed 25 turnovers (only six in the second half) and the Mavericks had 18.
Oak Harbor out-rebounded Meadowdale 36-32.


The Wildcats (0-7, 0-13) go to fifth-ranked Glacier Peak (5-2, 12-2) at 7:15 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 21.

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