MORGANTOWN, W. Va. — There wasn’t much Morgantown could do to slow down University junior Ashten Boggs Thursday night.
Boggs paced the Hawks with 25 points in a gritty, physical performance that played a role in securing a 51-45 win.
“It’s Morgantown. Everyone on this team was ready to go out and play our absolute hardest,” Boggs said. “We always know when we play MHS, they are a whole different team and so are we.”
Boggs proved too tough for the Mohigans to handle, using her size, strength, and hustle to outmatch her opponents all evening.
“She’s a physical player. She doesn’t mind mixing it up. She’s a tough kid and you can appreciate that as a player,” University High coach David Price said. “She doesn’t mind doing that, but she can also come out and finesse and shoot threes or drive and take someone off the dribble.”
The Hawks pose a large starting lineup — Boggs, Abbie Coen, and Mallory Napollio all stand 5-foot-11 — and Boggs’ size and ability to transition across multiple positions allowed her to draw a big-on-little match-up that she flawlessly took advantage of.
“She definitely gives us the ability to force a mismatch. They had to choose what they had to do with their bigs — they’ve got (Sydni) Clawges and they’ve got (Kaitlyn) Ammons. They chose to leave Ashten with a small guard on her,” Price said. “We took advantage of that. Ashten is a versatile player that can play guard, forward, or underneath at center. She went in there and handled business very well.”
White discussed the match-up issue and what his team can do better to battle against it the next time the two teams meet.
“We wanted to go man-to-man and put pressure on their guards, but she did a good job of posting our guards up,” he said. “We have to do a better job of having backside help.”
Perhaps there is no better example of the mismatch — or of Boggs’ toughness — than her foul shooting statistics. Boggs earned 10 trips to the line, which was one more than Morgantown recorded as a team.
She proceeded to convert 17 of the 20 foul shots in a steely performance.
Fifteen of Boggs’ 25 points, including 11 free throws, came in the fourth quarter to help spark a Hawks comeback after trailing by four points heading into the fourth quarter.
“During travel ball, that was one of my main focuses,” Boggs said. “Last year, almost every trip to the line, I was 1 for 2. Over the summer I worked tremendously with foul shots. I knew when games just like this came down to foul shooting at the end of the game, that’s how you win.”
In addition to Boggs, Selena Johnson tallied 11 points for the Hawks, with Zoe Murphy adding 9. Clawges led the Mohigans with 12 points, while Berit Johnson added 8 and Ammons contributed 6.