26-0 foe knocks girls out of playoffs

Published 12:04 pm Thursday, March 2, 2023

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By Brian Pitts

Davie Enterprise Record

The Davie girls basketball team’s reward for snapping a six-year playoff drought was a date with an undefeated juggernaut. Davie drew the hottest team imaginable (Northern Guilford) in the first round of the 4-A playoffs in Greensboro on Feb. 21.

While the margin was an unsurprising 63-36 in favor of the 26-0 Nighthawks, coach Lindsey Adams could take solace in the fact the War Eagles gave it everything they had for 32 minutes and never trailed by more than 28, which amounted to a small victory for a Davie team that was seeded 30th in the 32-team West Region.

The War Eagles faced a 33-8 deficit late in the first half. At that point, they could have waved a white flag and became the 10th Northern Guilford victim to fall by 40 or more points. But they played hard til the final horn and was only outscored by four points in the second half (30-26).

“In the first half, we were shellshocked,” Adams said. “We hadn’t been on that stage playing with that much pressure, so I think a lot of nerves got to us in the first half.

“In the second half, I think we played a lot better. Parents and coaches from the other team mentioned that our girls played them as hard as they’ve been played all year.”

Four players – Kenadi Gentry (11 points, six rebounds, four assists, two steals), Peyton Spaugh (nine points, five steals), Lauren Colamarino (eight points, seven rebounds, two assists) and Malayka Rankin (five points, seven rebounds, three assists) – handled most of the production for the War Eagles. Somer Johnson chipped in three points, three rebounds and two assists.

This was a critical year for the War Eagles, who returned considerable experience from 2021-22, and they responded with the most wins (13-13 record) in seven years.

Their list of accomplishments is pretty long. They stopped a six-game losing streak to Reagan by winning 53-42 on Dec. 16. They produced the longest winning streak (five) in eight years. They clobbered the eventual co-CPC champion, Reynolds, by 36 points, thanks to 28 points from Gentry, who scored the most by a Davie player in 131 games. Their 10 wins in a span of 12 games marked the finest 12-game stretch in eight years. They knocked off East Forsyth 49-38 after losing the previous 12 meetings. They qualified for the playoffs for the first time since 2015-16.

It wasn’t the best finish – Davie went 1-6 between Jan. 27-Feb. 21), but Adams’ three teams have gone 3-9, 9-14 and 13-13.

With four of the top five scorers being juniors, logic suggests that Davie will continue to ascend in 2023-24.

“It was short of our team goals this year, but it was still improvement,” Adams said. “I’m very proud of how far we’ve come with our program in general. We have a huge freshman class coming in, so I think it’s just going to continue to improve from here on.”

Notes: The top five scorers were Gentry (12.9), Johnson (9.1), Rankin (7.6), Spaugh (6.2) and Colamarino (6). … Johnson, Sydney Dirks and Keelyn Oakes played in their final Davie game. Johnson, who has committed to Brevard, finished her career with 602 points. … This was Davie’s first playoff game in seven years. It lost 60-56 at West Forsyth in the first round in 2015-16. … The Nighthawks, who were seeded third, were winning by an average margin of 61-29 after beating Davie. … The first round was rough as the CPC went 0-6. Parkland lost 61-60 in double overtime to Porter Ridge. East Forsyth lost 73-51 to Hickory Ridge. Reagan lost 63-33 to Charlotte Catholic. West Forsyth lost 58-40 to Asheville. And Reynolds lost 60-50 to Northwest Guilford. … After beating Hickory Ridge 58-40, the Nighthawks fell in the third round, 58-53, to Catholic.