Port girls stay hot; Grafton ends its skid

By 
MITCH MAERSCH

Ozaukee Press staff

A dominant victory at a conference opponent has the Port Washington High School girls’ basketball team one game from .500 and winners in three straight and four of its last five contests.

The Pirates last Friday blew out West Bend East, 68-49, behind a balanced scoring effort.

Post player Lillian Merow scored 15 points on 7-for-12 shooting, had eight rebounds and six blocks.

Guard Savanna Miller had 11 points, five rebounds and three assists. Guard Maggie Zirbes had 11 points. Hope Gilhooly had 10 points and 10 rebounds. Point guard Sierra Miller had eight points and five rebounds, and guard Abbey Grisar had six points, five assists and four rebounds.

Port was up, 37-31, at halftime. East’s Cadence Xiong had 32 points and kept the Suns in it.

“After halftime, we came out and got a bunch of stops. The defense has really been fueling us,” Port coach Jakub Wahl said.

That led to a 31-18 advantage in the second 18-minute set.

Wahl said he likes that everyone is getting involved.

“That’s been the theme the last month or so. We are getting balanced scoring, which is what we want for our team. Credit to our players for sharing the ball with each other,” he said.

Port went to 3-7 in the North Shore Conference and 7-8 overall. East went to 2-8 in the NSC. The Pirates were to play Grafton (7-3 NSC) at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee on Wednesday, Jan. 25, at Slinger (6-4) on Thursday, Jan. 26, and host Cedarburg (8-2) at 5:45 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 31, in a girls-boys doubleheader against the Bulldogs.

Grafton gets back on track

Grafton stopped its season-high losing streak at three games with a 60-29 home win over West Bend West last Friday.

“It’s kind of good to have a get-right game,” coach Matt D’Amato said. “We came out, we executed. We played good defense.”

Nearly the entire team contributed. Ten different Black Hawks scored, 10 had at least one assist, 10 had at least one steal and 11 had at least one rebound.

“Everybody was participating and got onto the stat sheet and had a hand in what we were doing,” D’Amato said.

Junior Sarah Aleknavicius led the way with 18 points on 7-for-9 shooting, five rebounds, three steals, two assists and two blocks. Thirteen of her points came in the first half.

“She came out really well in the first half. The shot was falling, shots she was missing a couple of weeks ago,” D’Amato said.

“She’s starting to come through here. It’s good for her confidence.”

Marrisa Morgan had nine points, and Savannah James had seven points and four assists. Gracie McNabb had six points and eight rebounds.

The Hawks held a 36-11 lead at halftime.

Kaitlin Mangan started for Grace Viesslman in the post, and D’Amato said “Grace handled it well and played really well.”

“We can take one out and put the other one in and you don’t lose anything. We’re rebounding and defending the post at a high level.”

Grafton went to 7-3 in the NSC and 10-6 overall. West is 2-8 in the NSC.

After playing Port at the Fiserv Forum, Grafton plays at Cedarburg at 5:30 p.m. Friday in a girls-boys doubleheader. The Hawks host Whitefish Bay (5-5) on Tuesday, Jan. 31.

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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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