The Winlock girls basketball team found itself lined up against a friendly face from the past Tuesday in its season opener, but came out winners over Pe Ell — and former teammate Charlie Carper — 57-39.
With turnout numbers too low to field a team last season, Carper and Kayla Miller traded in their Trojan jerseys to play with the Cardinals. Miller’s graduated, but this season Carper is back to lead her home school, and provided a tough test for her old friends.
Carper scored 24 of Pe Ell’s 39 points, and also brought down a game-high 19 rebounds and logged six steals. But as the game went on, Winlock did a better job of limiting her, holding the Trojans to just five points in the second quarter and 20 points in the second half.
“Our plan after the first quarter was to slow Charlie Carper down,” Winlock coach Dracy McCoy said. “(Adriana) Garcia and (Angela) Gil did a great job containing her, which is difficult to do with her speed and jumping abilities.”
Kindyl Kelly led all scorers with 27 points and nine rebounds, while Kiya Peppers pitched in 16 points in her first career start. Garcia put up eight points, while Gil had four to go along with eight boards.
“I am happy with our performance, as our team is learning new roles and positions after graduating key program players,” McCoy said. “The entire team played with a lot of heart and focus.”
Behind Carper, Brookelynn King had eight points and 10 rebounds, while Ricki Coleman score four and Madi Engel added three.
“I’m really proud of the effort our girls made tonight,” Pe Ell coach Dave Tuengel said. “For not having a team last year, they gave a great effort. We know we have a lot of work ahead of us and we’re eager to get back in the gym.”
Winlock (1-0) will host Mary M. Knight on Friday. Pe Ell (0-1) gets a home matchup against Oakville on Saturday.