RBHS varsity girls’ basketball wins against Troy Buchanan 48-23 at home, maintaining a substantial lead from start to finish

McKenna Parker, Staff Writer

With an immediate lead over Troy in the first quarter, the Bruins pulled even farther ahead for the duration of the game, securing a win on their home court Tuesday, Jan. 10. 

The Bruins started three sophomore players, one senior and one freshman. The youngest of these being freshman Jayda Porter who said she entered the game bringing as much energy as possible and gave confidence to the team after winning the tip-off and scoring the first points of the game in the opening minutes. 

Sophomore Malia Chievous helped lead the team to victory, as she worked hard this basketball season to take on a leadership role for the Bruins, she said. Chievous was the first to score in the second quarter with a layup and finished the game with 10 points. Additionally, sophomore Tylor McCallister made a buzzer-beater to end the second quarter, scoring 3 points. Through effective defense and ball movement, as well as getting multiple turnovers and rebounds, the Bruins made it difficult for the Trojans to score in the first half, moving into halftime 24-9. 

“I think the team played very well defensively in the first half,” Chievous said. “We were really intense and ready to play — we played aggressively and communicated well.” 

Adding to the Bruin lead over Troy, Porter came back from halftime with multiple points and a defensive rebound that opened up an opportunity for a two from Chievous. Chievous said that despite having a good lead moving into the third quarter, the team couldn’t let up, as their job wasn’t done. 

I think the team played very well defensively in the first half. We were really intense and ready to play — we played aggressively and communicated well.”

— Malia Chievous, sophomore guard and forward

Head coach Jill Nagel also guided the Bruins to victory Tuesday night by encouraging strong practices the week prior, which allowed them to focus on full-court offense and attack points before playing the Trojans. Prior to Tuesday, the Bruins hadn’t played a game in 12 days, forcing the team to work together even more in order to get the win, said Porter. The team had consistent plays and defense throughout the first half that continued into the third quarter, securing their strong lead of 42-17 over the Trojans at the start of the final quarter. 

“Tonight, we saw definite improvement in many areas,” Nagel said. “We haven’t played since Dec. 30, so we had to knock some rust off though we were very proud of our defensive efforts and multiple hustle plays.” 

At just under 3 minutes into the final quarter, RBHS was 20 points ahead of their opponents and continued to fight for the ball in every play. Between various plays, including a save by sophomore Mari Miller that prevented a turnover, and a successful pass to senior Addison Hopkins, who then scored a layup, the Bruins consistently worked together to achieve victory. Likewise, the second half included multiple defensive rebounds that kept the ball with RBHS both by Porter and senior Bella Corrado, among others. 

“In the second half, I think hustling on defense was one of our main strengths,” Porter said. “One of my main strengths was finding the open person, but I couldn’t have done that if they hadn’t found the opening and made good cuts — it’s a team sport that takes all of us.” 

The Bruins’ win against Troy gave the team confidence moving forward to their upcoming conference game Jan. 12. Although they took a break prior to the game, their victory shows how they always find a way to fall back into a successful rhythm with one another. The team has such strong trust and chemistry that every person’s energy contributed to the win Tuesday night, said junior Lexi Butts, and with it being a home game, a sense of community was brought that isn’t always felt at away games. 

“We got the job done,” Chievous said. “[The game] was a great refresh to keep us on the ‘win train’ this season.”

Did you enjoy the game Tuesday night? Let us know in the comments below.