News: Devilpups defeat Lady Gators 59-45
Story by Lance Cpl. Jackeline Perez Rivera
CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. - Lejeune High School’s girls’ varsity basketball team defeated Spring Creek 59-45 in a nonconference match, aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, Nov. 26.
The Devilpups started off strong, but lost their momentum in the second quarter, where Spring Creek took advantage to try to catch up.
The Devilpups regrouped at half time and powered through, maintaining a higher score despite a strong performance from Spring Creek. The two teams brawled into the fourth quarter when the Devilpups pushed through into a final victory.
“We were in control through most of the game,” said Kevin Popadines, head coach of the Lejeune High School’s girls’ varsity basketball team. “There were times that we let up a bit and they took advantage of it, but for the The team scored 40 rebounds, a season high for the team with Nikia Wallace, Devilpups’ point guard, leading the way with 10, her season and career high. Azaia Wallace, Devilpups’ guard, trailed her with six rebounds.
The team is early in the season and is still developing, he added.
“We’re still really young,” said Popadines. “It’s only our fourth game this year, and we lost a lot of our starters and main players from last year, so we are still learning to play together. They have grown a lot these last couple of games.”
Jamaz Richardson, a spectator and Lejeune High School senior, said he expected the team would improve greatly as time went on.
Meanwhile, the Devilpups played carefully and methodically, he added.
“It seemed like they were relaxed and took time to think about what they were doing,” said Richardson. “By taking their time, they made better plays.”
Their strengths in the game came from taking confident shots as well as a strong defense, added Richardson.
Nikia Wallace, Devilpups’ point guard, and Jarmeela Shaw, Devilpups’ guard, gave stand out perfomances in the game, said Richardson.
Nikia Wallace, scored 28 points and had four assists and steals, while Shaw scored 12 points. Alexis James, Devilpups’ center, also scored 12 points.
“They play with intensity,” said Richardson. “I like the way they play. I know they practice hard. I see them at the gym a lot.”
However, the victory was a team effort, said Popadines.
“I’m really impressed with how well they play together and the effort they give every day,” said Popadines. “I believe in this team. I hope the community comes out to support us.”
The fledgling team has won two games and lost two this year.
“I’m proud of their performance tonight,” said Popadines.
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