When two programs that prioritize playing hard-nosed defense and either have or want to make it a huge part of their identity lock up, it’s bound to be a defensive battle.
William Monroe and Western Albemarle girls basketball certainly delivered on that front, with the Dragons getting the better part of Thursday’s defensive clash, edging Western 48-36 in the Daily Progress Holiday Hoops Classic semifinals.
Monroe held Western to 36 points thanks in part to a dominant effort on the boards by junior Sam Brunelle, who pulled down 26 rebounds to go with her 26 points as she accounted for 54 percent of the Monroe offense. Brunelle also dished out six assists and blocked four shots. With some solid help from Hailey Morris, who knocked down four first half 3-pointers including one at the buzzer for her 12 points in the game, that was enough offense to hold off the Warriors.
Western Albemarle’s own junior standout, Elisabeth Coffman, finished with 14 points, five rebounds and four assists while teammate Hannah Leeb chipped in 10 points.
The Dragons advance to the classic’s final, where they’ll face Albemarle while Western will take on Charlottesville in the third-place game.
Fluvanna girls beat Buckingham
Fluvanna’s girls basketball team started its two-day stint in their own Christmas Bash, beating Buckingham County 55-31.
The Flucos built a sizeable lead with an explosive 19-point second quarter led by eight points from Nevaeh Ivory, who finished with a team-high 15 for the game. The Flucos led 32-13 at the break.
Jules Shepherd chipped in 13 for the Flucos while Destini Moore finished with eight.
Jayda Chambers led Buckingham with 22 points on the game.
St. Anne’s-Belfield’s girls basketball started its stint in the Boo Williams Holiday Classic with a 48-35 victory over Menchville. Jovia Winkey finished with 15 points and seven steals while Vanessa Woodfolk had eight points and 15 boards.
Albemarle’s girls beat Charlottesville 64-56 in the Holiday Classic semifinals.
Monticello boys basketball fell 45-39 to Bruton in overtime.
Monticello girls basketball beat Bruton 54-27.
Fluvanna’s boys team beat William Monroe 52-49.
Miller boys basketball beat united Faith Christian 74-69.