South Whidbey mauls Marauders / Girls basketball

A stingy defense and a strong finish helped the South Whidbey High School girls basketball team topple 4A Mariner 44-24 Monday, Dec. 30, in Langley.

The Falcons (0-1, 3-6) limited the Marauders (3-5) to single digit scoring in three of the four periods, including surrendering only one point in the second, and then played solid ball at the end to collect the non-league win.

Kayla Knauer sank a three-ball and scored 7 points in the opening quarter as South Whidbey scooted to a 13-8 lead.

Isabelle Wood scored half of the Falcons’ 12 second-period points, helping South Whidbey go up 25-9 at the break.

Mariner outscored the Falcons by 4 points in the third period despite a three-pointer from South Whidbey’s Ella Wood, but still trailed by 12, 32-20, going into the final frame.

“I thought the last 1:30 of the game was the best we played all year,” South Whidbey coach Jeff Hanson said. “(We) moved the ball well and got layups to put it away.”

Isabelle Wood was the recipient of several of the nice passes and tallied 8 points in the period to stop any Mariner thoughts of a comeback.

Isabelle Wood ended the contest with 16 points. Ella Wood and Knauer scored 9 each, Arianna Briggs had 6, Madi Knauer 2 and Emma Hodson 2.

The Falcons secured the win without making a free throw. South Whidbey was 0-for-5 at the line; Mariner dropped in eight of 14.

The Falcons return to conference play when they travel to Sultan (3-5) for a 5 p.m. game Friday, Jan. 3.