Charles Wright took a quick break from league play, but stuck to the same formula that has gotten it into contention in the Nisqually 1A. The Tarriers applied pressure early and often, forcing Tacoma Baptist into countless turnovers as Charles Wright pulled away for a 40-24 win on Jan. 11. It was the fourth time in nine games this season that the Tarriers have held opponents to under 30 points.
“Defensively we made a lot happen,” said Charles Wright head coach Kate Rue. “We got a lot of turnovers, and came up with steals. Pushing the ball and filling the lanes kind of got us back into our flow.”
The Tarriers held the Crusaders scoreless for over four minutes at the start, getting a 6-0 lead on a driving layup by sophomore point guard Majestic Moler. Tacoma Baptist committed eight turnovers in the first quarter alone. Moler was a catalyst on both sides of the ball all game, finishing with a team-high five steals while adding 13 points and five assists.
“She brings a lot of energy and makes things happen,” Rue said.
Senior guard Vanessa Davis – who finished 8-for-15 from the field for a game-high 19 points – helped increase the Tarriers’ lead to 16-4 with four early points in the second quarter. But the Crusaders’ defense stiffened up as well, holding Charles Wright scoreless for more than four minutes and cutting it to 16-10 at the break on a jumper by sophomore Ashley Brooks.
The Tarriers began pulling away at the end of the third quarter, taking a 24-12 lead on another driving layup by Moler. Tacoma Baptist continued to try to find offense with leading scorer Sarah Zeitler, but the senior forward was the focus of the Tarriers’ defense. Zeitler finished just 4-for-15 from the field and tied for a team high with nine points while adding eight rebounds.
“They’re a great team,” said Tacoma Baptist head coach Josh Narayan of Charles Wright. “They had the stamina and we didn’t, and they kind of pulled away.”
Brooks – who also tallied nine points for the Crusaders – nailed a three-pointer at the end of the third quarter to pull back within 24-15, but that was as close as Tacoma Baptist would get. Moler continued to penetrate the Crusaders’ defense, and her three-point play midway through the fourth quarter gave Charles Wright a commanding 35-19 lead. Shoni Pritchett was a force in the middle for the Tarriers, finishing with six points and a team-high nine rebounds.
Charles Wright moved to 8-1 overall on the year, and sits in second place in the Nisqually 1A league with a 4-1 mark. Tacoma Baptist dropped to 6-4 overall on the year, but has barely begun their league season, as they sit at 1-0 in the SeaTac 2B league.