Bay Port secures big win
Hendricks scores 29 vs. GBSW
By Rich Palzewic
GREEN BAY – Behind 29 points from Kyla Hendricks, the Bay Port girls’ basketball team knocked Green Bay Southwest from the ranks of the Fox River Classic Conference (FRCC) unbeatens.
Bolting out to a 14-2 lead, the Pirates pulled away in the second half for a 59-39 victory on Jan. 3.
Hendricks scored 13 points in the first 6 1/2 minutes of the game on a trio of 3-pointers and a pair of 2-point buckets.
Hendricks, a senior commit to Division II St. Cloud State University, then went scoreless until three minutes into the second half — scoring 16 more points the rest of the way.
“I had a nice start,” said Hendricks, whose 29 points were a career high. “I cooled off a bit in the first half after that but then came out in the second half with some confidence.”
After Bay Port’s (5-5 overall, 5-1 FRCC) hot start, it went cold from the field. Eight minutes into the game, the Pirates led 19-7 but scored only three points the rest of the half.
“I think Southwest had a little difficulty with our press to begin,” Bay Port coach Dennis Gladwell said. “Then with the personnel we had in the game, I took the press off — Southwest took advantage. We’ve been working on our press, and the girls did a great job of executing it.”
Trailing 22-7, Southwest ended the first 18 minutes of play with a 10-0 run to close within 22-17 at the break.
The Trojans were led by Addie Pytleski’s seven points in the first half.
Leading 30-23 after Rhyan Coughlin hit a 3 early in the second half, Hendricks then hit back-to-back 3-pointers to increase the Pirates’ lead to 36-25.
After another 3 from Coughlin and buckets from Ellie McDermid and Hendricks, Bay Port was up 43-27.
Coughlin, who ended with 11 points, hit three 3-pointers in the second half.
The Pirates ended the game by scoring their last eight points from the free-throw line — including six straight from Hendricks.
Pytleski ended with nine points to lead Southwest, while Margie Stevens and Emma Szarowicz each had eight.
“Bay Port’s press bothered us for a bit, but I think we turned that part of the game around,” Southwest coach Tony Lee said. “Against a team like Bay Port, we have to be locked in from the start. It took a lot of energy to get out of the hole we dug ourselves. We knew what Hendricks could do, but she flat-out played better than we did — she’s a great player.”
The Trojans (7-3, 5-1) saw their five-game conference winning streak come to an end.
“It was a huge win for us,” Hendricks said. “Especially coming to this gym, we’ve historically not played as well here. Southwest battled back (at the end of the first half) but in the locker room at halftime, we talked about increasing our energy. We did that to start the second half.”
Gladwell said when Hendricks is “on,” she’s tough to stop.
“She can hit from almost anywhere on the floor,” he said. “When we play our offense and pass like we should, we have a good flow.”
After losing a few close games earlier in the season, Gladwell said he thought his team needed to leave Southwest with a victory.
“It was a huge win for us — one we needed,” he said. “It’s a good confidence booster, but we have to continue to play one game at a time.”
Bay Port showed its depth by subbing frequently — something Gladwell said is his team’s strength.
“Everyone got some minutes, so I was glad about that,” he said. “Some may not get a lot of playing time, but when they get in there, they hustle and try hard.”