Black Bears, Local Sports, Sports

Tight-knit seniors lead Clay-Battelle to win over Wood County Christian

BLACKSVILLE — Prior to Friday’s game, the Clay-Battelle girls’ basketball team honored its five seniors. When the game tipped off, that senior class made a big impact as the Cee-Bees won 41-21 over visiting Wood County Christian.

With the exception of Lydia Moore, who is out with an injury, CB’s senior class of Raylee Hennen, Laikyn Dalton, Elyse Moore and Kenley Statler all started and combined for 24 of the team’s 41 points in the victory.

“It’s just so exciting,” said Hennen, who finished with seven points. “I’ve been playing with these girls since elementary school. It’s not our last game, but it’s definitely a happy moment. There’s so much excitement and everything just feels good.”

Dalton transferred to Clay-Battelle during high school, otherwise, the group has been playing basketball together for most of their lives.

“The five of them together are pretty formidable.” CB coach David Joyce said. “They love each other, they treat each other well. The older kids work with the younger kids well. Everything works, it’s a great group to work with.”

And everything was working for the Cee-Bees (7-7) Friday evening against the Wildcats (0-7).

Clay-Battelle held Wood County to just three field goals in the first half, which led to a 22-7 halftime advantage.

One of those field goals came on WCC’s first possession of the game when Ava Dunn was left wide open to drain a three-pointer for the game’s first score.

“Of course, the one kid we didn’t match on comes down and drains one,” Joyce chucked. “I’ve had to go through this before where kids hit threes when they shouldn’t.”

CB’s offense also took a second to kick into gear as the Cee-Bees’ first five shots all rimmed out of the basket.

“This is the story of our lives,” Joyce said. “We get good looks and they just don’t go. We had five makeable shots at the beginning and went 0-5 of those five. We might have made the next one, but I stopped counting.”

Statler sank a pair of free throws before Hennen ended the drought with a layup shortly after.

After getting over that initial hump, it was all Cee-Bees. Wood County made just four field goals in the second half, being held to seven in the entire game as the Cee-Bees coasted to the 20-point win.

“It’s like we’re in sync,” Hennen said of the team’s defense. “We talk really well on the floor, that’s something we’ve always been good at. I think that’s why our defense is really good, because we’ve played so much together and we know what we’re doing and where we’re moving.”

In addition of Hennen’s seven points, Dalton scored eight, Elyse Moore had five and Statler finished with four. Freshman Ali Hellyer led the team with 11.

Livi Meyer led Wood County with 12 points. Dunn finished with six on two three-pointers.

The Cee-Bees return to action Monday in an OVAC consolation game at home against Bridgeport (Oh.) at 7 p.m.

Clay-Battelle 41, Wood County Christian 21
WCC 5 2 8 6 — 21
CB 11 11 10 9 — 41
WOOD COUNTY (0-7) — L. Meyer 4 3-5 12; Erlanson 0 0-0 0; Dunn 2 0-0 6; Board 0 1-2 1; Perkins 1 0-0 2; S. Meyer 0 0-0 0; Navarro 0 0-0 0.
CLAY-BATTELLE (7-7) — Hennen 3 1-2 7; DeBolt 3 0-0 6; Dalton 4 0-0 8; E. Moore 2 1-2 5; Statler 1 2-2 4; Hellyer 4 2-2 11; Riley 0 0-0 0; Morgan 0 0-0 0.
3-Pt. Goals — Wood County 3 (Dunn 2, L. Meyer 1). Clay-Battelle 1 (Hellyer).