DOVER — Big game pressure?
No big deal for the veteran Sussex Central High girls’ basketball team.
The Golden Knights came out blazing, and trailed only briefly during a 54-35 win over Woodbridge in the Henlopen Conference championship game at Dover High on Friday.
“I told the girls before the game that we’ve been in several tight games lately and Woodbridge hasn’t been in any,” Sussex Central coach Ron Dukes said of his North Division champion that won a second straight Henlopen title.
“I think the girls came out with a lot of confidence, which is what I expected with the kind of players we have.”
Despite a couple quick runs, Henlopen South champion Woodbridge (14-7) spent most of the night trying to keep up with the senior-led Golden Knights (16-5).
“It got tough tonight,” said Woodbridge coach Emilio Perry. “We got matched up with an experienced team and it showed.
Sussex Central’s senior Emily Truitt hit three of her four 3-pointers in the first two quarters, and scored 11 points in each half for a game-high 22 overall.
Fellow senior Tatyana Jenkins scored another 18 points, and took on Woodbridge center Altia Anderson around the basket all night on both ends of the floor. Anderson scored 13 points that were hard earned, along with a bevy of rebounds and blocked shots.
After getting hit in the eyebrow in the third quarter, Jenkins wore a large band-aid over her right eye the rest of the way.
“There was no way that was going to keep me out the game,” she said.
The one-two punch carried the night in a packed gymnasium.
“Emily came out on fire in the first half and we found her in the right spots,” Dukes said. “In the second half, Tatyana took on their center and made out pretty well.”
After the teams traded first quarter runs, Sussex Central expanded its lead to 26-12 at halftime by holding their foe to just a free throw with six second left in the second quarter. The 12-1 burst put the Golden Knights in charge for good.
Senior Yasmin Hill gave Woodbridge a lift in the fourth quarter, scoring nine points.
The biggest games of them all await next week, and Truitt said “Hopefully we can get another trophy.”
No. 9 seed Sussex Central hosts No. 24 Cape Henlopen on Tuesday at 7 p.m., with the winner traveling to No. 8 Hodgson (16-4) on Thursday.
No. 11 Woodbridge hosts No. 22 A.I. du Pont (10-10) on Tuesday at 7, and the survivor will play at No. 6 Caravel (14-6) on Thursday.