by Brian Turrel
The Turner High School girls basketball team won 43-35 at home over Bishop Ward on Friday night. The visitors made it close, getting within one point late in the game, but weren’t able to pull off the comeback.
The Cyclones had the first-half advantage, using pesky on-ball defense to open a seven-point spread midway through the second quarter. Turner surged late to close the half within two, 18-16.
Turner dominated the third quarter as Ward’s intensity dimmed, racing out to an eight-point advantage by out-rebounding the Cyclones and disrupting passes. First-year Ward coach Kevin O’Brien lit a fire during a time out, demanding effort from the team with a speech that drew applause from the bleachers behind the bench.
Ward responded with a scoring surge in the fourth quarter, including two three-point baskets by Jimena Lopez. Up by only one point with two minutes remaining, Turner coach Brittani Hendrix called a timeout to steady the team, which responded by tightening its defense and hitting eight of ten free throws to close out the game.
Sophomore center Emily Beery was the star for the Lady Bears, and Ward had no answer to her strong inside presence on both ends of the court. Beery led Turner with 13 points and blocked several Ward shots.
Freshman Perla Frayre-Delgado led the scoring for Ward, putting up 14 points, including two three-pointers.
Turner improved its record to 3-4 (2-2 in the Kaw Valley League). They play next on Monday in a non-conference game at home against Blue Valley West. Ward dropped to 0-6 (0-4 in the league) and will play at Piper on Tuesday.