Girls' Basketball

Comets take weekly split with an eye on regionals

First-round matchup with Tipton Tigers on deck in the playoffs


The West Liberty girls’ basketball team split their four contests last week, winning one and losing one against Durant while capturing a win over Wilton and a loss to Tipton, moving their season record to 5-14.

The week started for the Comets on the road against Durant on Jan. 29. 

The Comet defense took control early and help their hosts to three points in the opening quarter. 

Durant managed to find their footing in the second quarter, but closed the gap by one as the Comets headed to the break leading 30-18. 

The second half saw the Wildcats continue to cut into the visitors lead, making up another three points. 

As it came down to the fourth quarter, an offensive struggle nearly plagued the Comets, as they scored just six, before getting rescued by a costly Durant turnover in crunch time.

 That solidified a 46-44 victory in the first game of the busy week. 

Pearson Hall led the Comet offense, tallying 16 points in the victory. 

Last Tuesday (Jan. 30), the Comets played host to Wilton. The Comets managed to squeeze a four-point advantage after the opening quarter of play as the Beavers chased their tails early. 

A 7-6 second quarter saw the lead narrow to three, but the Comets remained in control. 

Returning from the break, the Comets wasted no time getting to the scoring column early and often, as they totaled 19 to the hosts 14 to solidify their lead. 

A repeat double-digit performance from both teams in the final quarter did little to tighten the score, as the Comets outscored the Beavers 12-10 to close out the contest. 

Pearson Hall tallied another 16 in the second matchup of the week.

Sophie Buysse and Paige Werling joined her with 13 and nine respective in the second, and final, win of the week for the Comets.

On Friday (Feb. 2), the Comets matched-up against the Wildcats again, only this time as hosts due to weather postponements after the return from Winter Break. 

The second matchup saw the script nearly reversed on the Comets, as they were outscored 13-8 in the first quarter.

The Comets clawed back two points in the second before heading to the locker room trailing 25-22. 

The Comets refused to surrender, as in the third quarter the Comets pulled back another pair of points to cut the deficit to one heading into the final quarter. 

Alas, fourth quarter heroics did not appear for the Comets, as the Wildcats outscored them 11-8 in the final quarter to squeeze out a 46-42 victory to return the favor from Monday. 

The following day, the Comets played hosts to Tipton for their second matchup, but not final, of the season between the two schools. 

The Comets failed to find their footing at the end of the long week, being outscored 15-7 in the first quarter before being blanked in the second, trailing 31-7 at the half. 

Returning from half time, the Comets managed to get themselves back to scoring, but six points wasn’t enough to tighten the lead as Tipton tallied 10 of their own. 

Trailing 41-13 heading into the final quarter, the Comets looked to amass as many points as possible in the final quarter, nearly matching their output for the entire contest to that point, scoring 12 but falling 49-25 on their home court.

The Tigers swept the regular season series with a 43-34 win back on December 8. 

Fortunes will need to reverse for the Comets to make a run in regionals as they will travel to Tipton on Saturday for the first-round of postseason action.

If the Comets pull off the upset, they will take on the winner of Mediapolis and Central Lee.

Teams in the opposite half of the bracket include Camanche, Davenport Assumption, Anamosa and Mount Vernon.

Before this, however, are the final two regular season games. These occured on Monday, Feb. 5 and Tuesday, Feb. 6 against Benton and Regina Catholic, respectively.