CIA girls bounce back at state

CIA girls 57, Huslia 41

The Eagles girls team staked out an early lead and cruised to a consolation bracket victory Monday at West High School.

The win places CIA into the semifinals on Tuesday against Scammon Bay. The winner of that game will play in Wednesday’s consolation final.

Junior Ashleigh Hammond led a balanced CIA attack with 13 points, and was followed by Kendra Brush and Richele McGahan with 12 points each.

“We’re grateful for another chance to play as a team and keep the season going along,” said CIA coach Rustin Hitchcock. “We have that as a goal getting back to the Sullivan.”

Much like the Nikolaevsk girls team earlier in the day, CIA played a much more relaxed game, since the pressure of winning a state championship was gone from the picture.

“We worked on the chemistry issues, and going back to who we are as a team,” Hitchcock said. “I thought that really helped, as soon as we stepped on the floor, we were a different team.”

CIA owned seven of the first nine field goals made in the game, building an 18-5 lead with just over a minute left in the first quarter.

Huslia’s high-flying passing game turned out to be its weakness, as multiple half-court flyers were intercepted by the Eagles and brought back for layups.

“It was about everyone attacking, and honestly our post play was fantastic,” Hitchcock said. “Richele and Kendra … we haven’t seen a real consistent game from them maybe all season. They responded to the challenge.”

About the only thing working well for Huslia was the play of guard Kelly Sam, who scored her team’s first 10 points. Sam ended up with 23 points total, which included a trio of 3s.

Leading 34-20 at halftime, CIA continued to find turnovers, and pushed its lead to 43-24 by the 4:36 mark of the third quarter.

After taking out some of his starters, Hitchcock nearly paid the price as Huslia fought back to a 10-point deficit with 3:46 left in the game, but free throws from Nicole Moffis and Madison Orth helped to ice the game in the final minutes.

Monday girls

Eagles 57, Hustlers 41

CIA 18 16 12 11 —57

Huslia 10 10 12 9 —41

CIA (57) — Hanna 0 0-0 0, Moffis 2 5-12 9, Taplin 0 0-0 0, Hills 0 0-2 0, Brush 5 1-2 12, Lyons 1 0-0 2, Hammond 6 1-2 13, McGahan 6 0-0 12, Orth 3 3-5 9. Totals 23 10-23 57.

HUSLIA (41) — K. Sam 10 0-0 23, Moses 0 0-0 0, C. Sam 1 0-0 2, D. Moses 0 0-0 0, Rean 0 0-0 0, T. Sam 0 0-0 0, Leader 1 0-0 2, Henderson 3 0-0 6, Hundinglen 4 0-0 8. Totals 19 0-0 41.

3-point field goals — CIA 1 (Brush 1); Huslia 3 (Sam 3). Team fouls — CIA 8; Huslia 15.

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