FUQUAY-VARINA — A wayward toddler who found her way onto the court late in the first quarter was about the only thing to stop the Fuquay-Varina girls basketball team Friday night.
And that was only temporpary.
The Bengals blitzed Lee County 58-20, hardly looking like a team that had lost its first four games of the season.
“I was concerned about Lee County. I really was,” said Fuquay coach Monte Bullock. “I saw them scrimmage down at Southern Lee. They have a lot of players and they apply a lot of pressure.”
Indeed, the Yellow Jackets had more players on their bench (nine), than Fuquay had dress (seven). Depleted by four players with various injuries, the Bengals showed little reserve and lots of resilience to overcome their lack of depth.
Fuquay, felled by slow first quarters all season, shot out to a 19-7 lead in the opening eight minutes, sparked largely by a spirited transition game and sustained by a Lee scoring drought of more than six minutes.
“This doesn’t phase me at all, having just seven girls. Hoosiers is my favorite movie of all time, and I quote the movie all the time,” Bullock said. “That’s my team out there.”
Camille Baker, the Benagls’ leading scorer, led the charge with 18 points. Forward Tiana Hunter was a menace inside on both ends of the floor. The finished with 18 points and 11 rebounds. And it was her vision and Wes Unseld-like, full-court outlet passes led to a slew of baskets and helped the Bengals shoot 55 percent and led 33-15 by halftime.
By intermission, all seven players had scored for the Bengals. Freshman guard Kelly Suggs added eight points, seven steals and four rebounds.
Fuquay ratcheted up the defensive pressure in the second half and held Lee County to just five points, something that caught Bullock by surprise.
“They had five points in the second half? Wow! That’s awesome,” he said.
Earlier in the week, the Bengals lost a two-point nail-biter to Middle Creek. Though they came up short, Bullock said his team emerged from that game with the confidence that a win would soon be in their possession. Now that they have it, how do the Bengals build on it as they head into the teeth of the Tri-9 schedule?
“I don’t even know who we play next. I’ll look at that later tonight. I’m full of sports cliches, but we take it one game at time. It doesn’t matter,” he said.