Men’s basketball: Starmount 66 – Elkin 49
ELKIN — In front of a jam packed crowd on Friday night, the Battle of the Bridge basketball edition was in full swing as the Elks hosted the Starmount Rams. This season has been tough for the Buckin’ Elks as well as the Rams as both teams have had a losing season. On Friday night, the Rams handed the Elks its 16th loss of the season with a 66-49 win.
In a back-and-forth first period, Starmount got on the board first with a jump shot by Griffin Cass. Elkin immediately answered back on its next possession as Tevin Harris found himself wide open at the top of the three-point line and drained his shot to give Elkin a 3-2 lead. Both teams kept battling on opposite sides of the court as the Rams would make its shot, and the Elks would also make its shot. Neither team was able to hold on to a substantial lead in the first period, but the Rams were able to hold on to a two-point lead going into the second period.
The second period saw the Rams score 13 points and hold the Elks to just seven points. Starmount came out firing as it was able to take a 10-point lead over the Elks late in the second period. Just as it looked like the Elks would go into the half down by 11 points, Ezra Atkinson gifted the Elks a beautiful three-point shot from the outside to cut Starmount’s lead to eight points. Atkinson’s shot gave the Elkin student section something to cheer about going into halftime.
In the final two quarters, Elkin tried to match the intensity of the Rams, but it came up short. Starmount scored 24 points in the third period and held Elkin to 11. In the final period, Elkin outscored the Rams 18 to 14, but it wasn’t enough to take the lead. The Rams ended the night with a 66-49 conference win and handed the Elks another loss.
Eric Wiles and Griffin Cass both put up strong performances for the Rams on Friday night. Wiles ended the night with 19 points while Cass came away with 16 points.
Women’s basketball: Elkin 58 – Starmount 39
The Lady Elks basketball team earned its first win in four games on Friday night. The Elks met up with their Battle of the Bridge opponents, the Starmount Rams whom they had beaten earlier this season in Boonville. The Elks came out firing as they scored double digits in every period and came away with a 58-39 win over the Rams.
Kylie Thomas was the Elks’ saving grace and she put up an explosive performance with 23 points. Thomas helped get things going as she served up an assist to Laken Brown, who scored the first basket of the game with a lay-up. Starmount answered back two minutes later as Chloe Ford was fouled and made one of her free throws. The Rams stole the momentum from the Elks as Claire Maske fed the ball to Ford who put up a three-point shot to give Starmount a 4-2 lead. The Rams lead didn’t last long, as the Elks went on an eight-point run with baskets by Chloe Osbourne, Corrin Shores and Thomas. Ford was the only Ram to score until Skylar Martin was sent to the free-throw line where she made one of her shots. The Elks kept up their momentum as they scored several more points to end the first period with a 16-5 lead over the Rams.
The Elks were able to score eight points before Starmount scored its first points of the second period. Starmount looked to be catching up to the Elks, but Thomas made sure to keep the game out of the Rams’ reach as she came away with several points. At halftime Elkin had a hearty 31-17 lead over Starmount.
The final two quarters saw Elkin take firm control of the game as it scored 27 points compared to Starmount’s 22. The Rams made several substitutions to try and throw off the Elks’ game plan, but the Elks kept things swayed in its favor until the final period was over. Elkin earned another conference win over Starmount with a 58-39 victory.
Martin and Ford each had 10 points for the Rams, while Maggie Freed had six, Cartwright scored five, Pozo had four, Byrd had three, and Molly Maske had one. The Rams move to 2-15 overall and 0-8 in the MVAC.