Prep girls basketball: Lakota West blasts Fairfield in GMC rematch

WEST CHESTER TWP. — Lakota West High School girls basketball coach Andy Fishman said revenge wasn’t a factor Thursday night, instead saying his Firebirds have more pressing concerns to focus on.

Good thing for the Fairfield Indians the Firebirds don’t take things personally.

Facing an FHS squad that beat West 53-48 in December, the Firebirds took command early, running off the first 20 points of the game en route to a 71-38 triumph in the Greater Miami Conference rematch.


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Freshman Chance Gray sank four treys and had a game-high 20 points as West hit 26-of-59 from the field and forced 30 turnovers while improving to 15-2 overall and 10-1 in the GMC.

“Not at all,” Fishman said when asked if the first meeting was brought up. “We are always trying to get better. One of the opportunities to get better was tonight against Fairfield. We did want to demonstrate tonight that we have made significant improvement since December. We are a different squad now. We wanted to be sharp tonight and leave no doubt, and we did that.”

West blitzed the Indians from the start, forcing five turnovers while jumping to a 9-0 lead barely two minutes in.

The tide didn’t turn following a Fairfield timeout as the Indians continued to turn the ball over facing the high-intensity West pressure in falling behind 20-0.

“We came out and do what we do,” Fishman said of the fast start. “We wanted to get after it. The girls executed the game plan. Our ball movement was excellent, almost too unselfish at times.”

West senior guard Jaydis Gales had 12 points and said the Firebirds approached the game as just another GMC contest.

“No, we didn’t talk about it,” Gales said when asked about the first meeting. “We just knew what we had to do since they beat us the first time. We had to be aggressive and show them we are not the same team they beat the first time.”

West forced 18 first-half turnovers while building a 40-22 edge at the break. Gales said the turnovers were just a result of the Firebirds doing what they can when they turn up the pressure.

When asked about the defense resembling past West teams, Gales said, “Definitely. I love it. We are taking it one game at a time.”

While West appears ready to gear up for another long Division I tourney run, the Indians were left scratching their heads following the resounding loss.

Fairfield coach David Loper wasn’t happy with the officiating all night, picking up a technical in the fourth quarter.

“The first quarter hurt us,” Loper said. “They are a great team. We didn’t play a good first quarter, but I like the way my team battled.”

Zahrya Bailey lit West up for 23 points in the first meeting, but was held to 12 this time. Kelis Jones had seven and Kayla Summerville had six as the Indians (10-5, 6-4) struggled, shooting 15-of-44 from the field.

Fairfield only spent three minutes in the locker room at halftime, but the adjustments didn’t work as the Indians turned the ball over the first four possessions of the second half.

West capitalized, extending the lead to 54-29 after three quarters. The Firebirds had their biggest lead (68-31) in the final period.

Fishman said his young squad has found a groove and added that day-by-day progression is the plan in hopes of wrapping up a fifth straight GMC title. West is alone in first place, followed by Princeton (9-2) and Mason (7-2).

“We are very excited about the progress of the girls,” Fishman said. “Our previous teams enjoyed the daily grind challenging each other, and I believe this team is starting to enjoy that grind. We have to keep the pedal to the metal and keep getting better each day starting with tomorrow’s practice.”

Dominique Camp had 10 points and six assists for West, which travels to Oak Hills on Saturday. Kailyn Dudukovich added 10 points to the winning effort.

Fairfield will be at home against Lakota East on Saturday.

Fairfield 4-18-7-9—38

Lakota West 22-18-14-17—71

FAIRFIELD (10-5, 6-4 GMC): Shaniyah Reese 1 0 2; Zahrya Bailey 4 4 12; Karlee Mils 1 0 2; Addie Kidd 1 0 2; DeAngele Peterson 1 0 2; Tori Williams 2 0 5; Kelis Jones 3 0 7; Kayla Summerville 2 0 6. Totals: 15-4-38

LAKOTA WEST (15-2, 10-1 GMC): Jaydis Gales 5 0 12; Bryana Henderson 1 2 4; Chance Gray 7 2 20; Sydney Benning 1 0 2; Dominique Camp 3 4 10; Kylie Zurlinden 1 1 3; Keiara Gregory 1 0 2; Jessica Clark 1 0 2; Kailyn Dudukovich 3 4 10; Nevaeh Dean 3 0 6. Totals: 26-13-71

3-pointers: F 4 (Summerville 2, Williams, Jones), L 6 (Gray 4, Gales 2)

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