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WL Girls beaten by WB Bears
by Norv and Mary Coblentz · February 05, 2014

The West Liberty Comets girls' basketball team has improved a lot since the beginning of the season, but a five-point first quarter and a 12-point difference in the fourth were too much to overcome on Jan. 24. The Comets fell 60-41 to the Bears at West Branch.

"It's kind of been our story lately," West Liberty Head Coach Nick Heath said, "We get down seven, 18, 23 points, whatever, and we fought back.

"Tonight it was 40-35 with seven minutes left in the fourth quarter. (West Branch) went on an 8-0 run to take a commanding lead (in) the game, and that was tough to fight back from. We're improving. We've got a decent four-game stretch now."

First Quarter

West Liberty got off to a very slow start offensively and was down 7-0 before Hailey Daufeldt scored the Comets' first points of the game on a putback basket with 3:36 remaining in the first quarter. West Branch scored two more baskets, then a three-pointer by Molly Kelly made it 11-5. West Liberty trailed 13-5 by the end of the quarter.

Second Quarter

The Bears stretched their lead to double digits with a putback basket to start the second quarter. Emma Baker was fouled on a shot and made both free throws for the Comets for a 15-7 score. West Branch made a three-point basket; then Kelly drove to the hoop and scored. The Bears scored in the paint, and the Comets took a time out with 5:46 on the clock, trailing 20-9.

Later on Daufeldt got a defensive board and Baker scored with a jump shot for a halftime score of 30-19, Bears.

Third Quarter

Daufeldt hit an outside two-pointer for the third quarter's first score. West Branch scored two baskets, then the Comets fouled the Bears. West Branch made the first free-throw then had a lane violation. The Comets turned the ball over, and West Branch scored. Kelly hit a three-point basket at the 4:42 mark, beginning a 10-0 run by the Comets for a 37-24 score. Baker got a defensive rebound, then the Bears pulled down a defensive board. Anderson got a defensive rebound, then the Bears got a rebound and traveled.

West Branch got another defensive rebound, then fouled. Anderson was fouled on a shot and made both free throws for a 37-26 score. West Branch turned the ball over and Anderson made a three-point shot for a 37-29 score. Kaalberg got a steal and Kelly drove to the hoop and scored for a 37-31 tally. The Bears called a time out with 1:54 on the clock.

Later on West Branch scored in the paint, then Bridenstine made a basket for a 40-33 score at the end of three quarters.

Fourth Quarter

Daufeldt scored the first basket of the fourth quarter, narrowing the Comets' deficit to 40-35. But the Bears went on a 14-0 run. Kelly scored the next West Liberty basket on a drive at the 2:30 mark for a 54-39 score. West Branch made four free throws. Kyleigh Becker made a basket with 52.3 seconds remaining. West Branch made two more free throws for a final score of 60-41.

"To me (West Liberty has been) playing as well as anybody the last couple of games," West Branch Head Coach Jarod Tylee said. "We warned our girls. You can't overlook anybody, especially a team that's coming in hot."

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