Center leads Westview to win
KINGMAN - Danny Gonzalez intends to remember his first home game as the Kingman High girls varsity basketball coach as a competitive one that indicated how good his team could be down the road.
But he will also have to remember sitting alongside his starting backcourt for most of the game, spending halftime outside in the cold, and Westview High's Laquesha Franklin's post play.
The Knights' center dropped in 25 points on Friday night and kept the Lady Bulldogs from turning a sure victory into a close game with a 68-51 win.
"The shots weren't falling when we had them, and that certainly changed everything," Gonzalez said. "When you're working your tail off and shots don't fall, it always seems a lot worse."
Franklin scored 10 of Westview's 18 fourth-quarter points, including a pair of buckets that sparked a 9-0 run after Kingman had closed to within 10 of the lead.
"A lot of times with a big girl you wouldn't expect her to knock 'em down like she was, but she was on fire," Gonzalez said.
With Sidney and Lindsey Reed in early foul trouble, backup guard Candice McMillon helped Kingman (1-1) stay close after one quarter, but the fouls (31 in the half) continued to pile up for both teams and slow down the game, playing to the Knights' favor and helping them take a 35-21 advantage into halftime.
"We need to be aggressive and not out of control, and that was the difference," Gonzalez said. "Defensively they wanted to get after it, and I want them to do that. It just so happened that we we're having some fouls called on them."
Following an extended halftime session when the fire alarm sounded and required an evacuation, Kingman outscored Westview in the third quarter as six different players contributed points, but the Knights had an answer for every one of the Bulldogs' runs.
Kamber Butler scored 19 points and had four rebounds to lead Kingman, and Lindsey Reed added nine points - all in the second half.
"I thought Kamber Butler worked her tail off," Gonzalez said. "The fact that I could not keep more of my starters on the court for three-fourths of a game because of foul trouble had a lot to do with our poor play."
Kingman begins region play on Thursday at North Canyon.