GRANDVIEW - The Grandview Lady Greyhound basketball program showed signs of progress this past Friday night with a 65-58 home victory over Ephrata, expected to be one of the CWAC's best teams this season.
"This was a big win for our program early into the season!" enthused Coach Paul Van Pelt. "Coming in, Ephrata was predicted to finish as one of the top two teams in the CWAC league, so this was a huge test for our young team coming into the game and playing on our home court."
The coach couldn't be more pleased with the results or his team's effort.
"I am extremely proud with the girls and how they played. We started off slow and we really didn't play our type of basketball until the second half. We were lucky to be down by only four at halftime."
Indeed, early on Ephrata led 16-10 after one quarter before Grandview pulled to within 28-24 at the half. The Lady Greyhounds then got all the way back in the ball game by knotting the score at 42-42 heading into the final stanza.
Grandview, though, showed not only the gumption to stay with the highly touted Tigers, but to actually pull away in the fourth quarter with a 23-16 run.
The Lady Greyhounds also showed grace under pressure by hitting key free throws down the stretch, connecting on 19-of-27 attempts from the charity stripe.
"We showed character by digging deep and getting the job done. Their relentless attitude and desire came through when the game was on the line that enabled us to finish the job and get the win," said Van Pelt. "This was a complete team effort, and all the girls added something to get the victory."
The team effort, which included forcing 19 Ephrata turnovers and 10 steals on defense, was led by Payton Parrish with 24 points and 15 rebounds. Teammate Marissa Caballero shared game-high scoring honors also with 24 points to go with five rebounds and three assists.
On defense, Grandview got a boost from Gabby Montelongo with four steals.
Ephrata's leading scorers were Heidi Buchert and Kelsey Yenney, with 14 and 13 points, respectively.
Grandview was supposed to play at Selah on Saturday, but the game was postponed to Dec. 29 due to bad weather
Grandview (1-0, 2-1) puts its two-game win streak on the line tomorrow, Tuesday, at home against Quincy.
Van Pelt says the key to building on Friday's win is to be ready to play from the opening tip-off to the final buzzer.
"This is a step in the direction we would like this team to go to reach the goals that we have set for ourselves," he said. "All we have to do is take it one game at a time and give everything they have for 32 minutes."