Leesburg, Va. — After a three-point loss to open their season, followed by a tough showing in game two, the Loudoun County High School girls basketball team was looking to get on track when they hosted first-year Lightridge High School in Leesburg on December 29.
While the first quarter didn’t go according to plan, the Captains were able to settle in, take better care of the basketball, and notch their first win of the season, 58-16.
“It’s tremendous just from the sense of confidence for our girls that we can do it this year,” Loudoun County head coach Austin Campbell said. “I’m really proud of the way they’ve been competing. Our focus this year is more than just competing in games, but also closing out games. It feels good to finally get that first one where we’re able to close it out.”
It was a shaky start for the Captains who turned the ball over on each of their first three possessions, leading to a 7-0 Lightridge lead. Loudoun County senior forward Elayna Whitley finally got her team on the board with just over a minute to play in the first quarter with a bucket that sparked a 27-2 Loudoun County run to close out the first half.
“I just told them to calm down and settle in,” Campbell said. “If we take care of the little things—taking care of the basketball, stepping through passes—I think this team could be really successful going forward.”
After Whitley got the rally started, she flipped on her distributor switch and started getting her teammates involved. Junior guard Jenny Allen knocked down a trio of threes in the third to keep the momentum going as freshman guard Riley White took over the game offensively, finishing with a game-high 17 points while adding 6 rebounds.
“[Riley’s] maturity as a freshman is pretty impressive,” Campbell said. “She has a good basketball IQ, and she just knows where to be and when to be there.”
The young Lightning got into some early and lasting foul trouble as freshman guard Riley Hwang did all she could to keep her team in the game, pacing Lightridge with 9 points and 5 boards.
Loudoun County (0-0, 1-2) will look to keep their winning ways going as they host Dulles District power Loudoun Valley in Leesburg on December 30. Lightridge (0-0, 0-2) will look to earn the program’s first win when they host Independence on December 30 in Aldie.
“I’m so proud of the girls and how they’ve been able to adapt to all the changing rules, wearing masks, not having a normal routine of a warmup,” Campbell said. “They’ve done a tremendous job adjusting to that adversity.”
Loudoun County Stats