by Michael Smith
The Grain Valley girls basketball team is starting to get hot at the right time.
With the district tournament less than three weeks away, the Eagles have been on a winning streak. They got a big win over Suburban White Conference rival 67-52 and continued their momentum into Thursday’s road game against Raytown.
Twelve different Eagles scored at least two points as they dominated in a 76-25 victory, extending their winning streak to four games.
Grain Valley head coach Randy Draper was able to empty his bench midway through the third period when it held a 56-22 lead. The team pressured Raytown, leading to multiple turnovers and points in transition.
“It’s hard to play basketball at Grain Valley, we have a lot of good players,” Draper said. “Our bench players got to show what they could do in this game and several of them scored and that’s always fun.”
Junior swingman Nevaeh Clausen, who also plays for the junior varsity team, scored right points of the bench. Senior guard Emma Thiessen also got in on the action.
Normally a pass-first player, Thiessen got up some shots in the second half and ended up with 10 points, including two 3-pointers, which drew loud cheers and claps from the other Eagles on the bench.
“We have been pushing her to shoot it because she can,” Draper said. “She’s getting more comfortable in games. One of the reasons we left her in the game, if you listen, she helps organize everyone on the floor.”
Grain Valley stormed out to a 30-7 at the end of the first period and went into halftime up 50-17. Junior Camryn Kelly led all scorers with 16 points, which included four 3-pointers, all in the first half.
Senior forward Meghan Knust added 10, which included a pair of treys for the Eagles (14-6, 5-1 conference).
“She just knows how to play,” Draper said of Knust. “She knows how to play and she can see the floor. She stretched the defense out today by hitting a couple of threes. She’s a really skilled player.”
Grain Valley sophomore Upper Harrison drives by Raytown senior Taomi Golden.
Photo credit: Michael Smith
Grain Valley senior forward Meghan Knust drives to get left around a Raytown defender during a 76-25 blowout of the Blue Jays Thursday on the road. Knust scored 10 points. Photo credit: Michael Smith