By GANNON HANEVOLD
Moapa Valley Progress
The Moapa Valley High School Varsity Girls basketball team played two more games last week before sealing up their spot in the playoffs. Their final two games would decide their seeding in the playoffs and whether or not they would get the advantage of playing on their home court.
The first game of the week came at home against SECTA.
The Pirates jumped out to a quick start, as they have many times this year. With a 19-2 lead at the end of the first period, Moapa was immediately in control.
However, SECTA outscored Moapa Valley by two in the second quarter to narrow the deficit a bit, at 31-15.
The Pirates would go on to continue their rout of the Roadrunners by a final score of 61-27.
In her final home regular season game, Marshall had an outstanding performance, notching 22 points and leading her team to a victory. Fellow seniors Madison Bush and Kaila Enosa each added seven.
The Pirates shot nine of thirteen from the free throw line, a much improved number from the previous week’s struggles at the stripe.
This final season home game also served as Senior Night for Moapa Valley. This year’s roster contains five seniors including Kinlee Marshall, Madison Bush, Matilda Thompson, Kaila Enosa, and Tiffany Sprague.
The second game of the week came on the road against the rival Boulder City Eagles.
While it was the seniors who led the team on Wednesday, it was the underclassmen who led the charge on Friday.
Early on, the Eagles fought hard with the Pirates, with the game tied at fives early in the first quarter.
A three-pointer by freshman Kaitlyn Andersen changed that. The Pirates would turn that shot into a 9-2 run that was led by Andersen and Marshall.
The Pirates extended their lead to 30-18 at the half. Andersen continued to impress on the offensive end.
In the second half, Moapa kept rolling. The final score would be 53-32. Andersen led the team with 14 points and sophomore Lainey Cornwall was not far behind with 13 of her own. This win clinched the second seed in the Sunrise Division for the Pirates.
Moapa Valley would finish the season with a 23-5 record, going 8-2 in league play.
The Pirates’ strong season earned them the second seed in their division and the opportunity to host an opening round playoff game. That game will be played this Wednesday at Moapa Valley High School at 6:00 PM. The Pirates will take on the Trojans of Pahrump Valley.
In their first game of this season, Moapa defeated the Trojans, 43-28, as Marshall and Thompson both scored in double figures.
Now comes the team’s journey to try to become the first Pirate Girls basketball team to make the state tournament since 2003. On a bigger scale, it has been 18 years since the Lady Pirates took home a title on the hardwood, but this season, they hope to reach that peak.