Beaten

J.F. Webb’s Isreal Thorpe (center) beats a N.C. School of Science and Mathematics defender for a late basket during her team’s 53-21 victory on Wednesday evening.

OXFORD — J.F. Webb women’s basketball coach Paul White believes his team is in an ideal position as it prepares for the bulk of its conference schedule.

Wednesday’s matchup against the N.C. School of Science and Mathematics favored Webb from the opening tip, as the Warriors dominated their opponent on both ends of the floor to win 53-21 and extend their win streak to three.

Despite having just come off a victory over Southern Nash the night before, White said his players perfectly executed the game plan he laid out for NCSSM, especially on defense.

“I’m ecstatic and excited,” White said. “That’s the kind of defensive effort we’ve been looking for all season long. After watching countless hours of film on [NCSSM], we knew who their shooters were and took them away. I know we scored a lot of points, but I’m more proud of the defensive effort.”

White said the key to Webb’s stalwart defense comes down to how his players approach each practice.

The defensive drills White and his staff put the team through focus on going after and recovering 50-50 balls. White encourages players to be fearless on defense and not worry about getting floor burns, as he knows that aggression on defense will frequently reward the Warriors with scoring chances.

Those chances to score points came frequently for Webb as its defense tormented NCSSM in transition and underneath the basket. Junior Halle Brown led the way on offense with 19 points, while fellow junior Tierre McCaden also finished in double figures with 13 points.

White added that getting Brown back into the lineup after a prolonged absence has galvanized J.F. Webb on offense. He expects Webb to keep making offensive breakthroughs as Brown gets in more practice and game reps.

Brown has “really been showing up here lately since we got her back in the second semester,” White said. “We’re trying to get her into game shape since she hasn’t played basketball in two years. She’s been working out on her own, but hasn’t really had the basketball workouts. That’s natural ability Halle is relying on right now.”

The victory over NCSSM, J.F. Webb’s final non-conference game of the season, improved its overall record to 8-6 on the 2021-22 season. The Warriors are fourth in the Northern Lakes Athletic Conference with a 2-2 record following losses to Southern Durham and Durham School of the Arts earlier in the season.

White said that J.F. Webb is currently on the right trajectory with eight games left on the schedule and that he, his staff and his players are determined to keep making necessary improvements that will keep the program competitive through February.

“We know there is still a long haul ahead,” White said.

“We’re getting right back into the meat of our conference schedule, and I believe we are still contenders for the conference championship. If we can keep playing like this, then we can play with anybody.”

J.F. Webb’s first matchup of the upcoming week will be against a surging Vance County program, with the two sides set to meet in Henderson at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.

J.F. Webb scorers

Halle Brown 19, Tierre McCaden 13, Isreal Thorpe 8, Ta’ida Tucker 6, Sakiyah Edmonds 3, Tamia Williams 2

Contact Brandon White at bwhite@hendersondispatch.com or by phone at 252-436-2840

Contact Brandon White at bwhite@hendersondispatch.com or by phone at 252-436-2840

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