The Big Green Invitational girls’ basketball tournament kicked off at Valley View on Thursday with multiple area teams involved.
The varsity field consists of eight teams including Valley View, Callisburg and Collinsville. Gainesville also has a junior varsity team competing in the varsity tournament.
Valley View coach Frederica Studamire said hosting this tournament each year gives the Lady Eagles a chance to play at home.
“I love hosting the tournament,” Studamire said. “Being able to see other schools come in and participate (and) play. It’s just good to play in (front of) our home crowd, always.”
Valley View defeated Honey Grove 40-28 in its first game of the weekend. The gym filled in nicely with the home team playing, including multiple Valley View Elementary classes.
Valley View trailed 17-16 at halftime but dominated the third quarter 8-1. The Lady Warriors tried to fight back in the fourth and forced numerous turnovers in the process, but Valley View did enough to keep Honey Grove at bay.
Studamire said the Lady Eagles played with more intensity in the second half.
“I talked to them and told them what we needed to do,” Studamire said. “We needed to pick it up, take care of the ball. We didn’t take care of the ball as much as we’d like to, but that’s a process that we gotta make sure we work on.”
Sophomore Cierra Kemp kept the Lady Eagles in control with a 9-1 run by herself, with sophomore Reagan Brinkley providing several assists.
Kemp led all scorers with 11 points. Valley View senior Andee Renfro had 9. Honey Grove was led by Ty Battle, who scored 8.
Studamire said Kemp played well.
“She’s a sophomore, still learning the game,” Studamire said. “She attacked the basket. That’s what I’m looking for, so I’m proud of her for taking that initiative.”
Prior to the Valley View game, Collinsville and the Gainesville JV went head-to-head to open their respective runs. The Lady Pirates prevailed 58-13.
The JV players had few answers against varsity competition. Collinsville shut out the Lady Leopards in the third quarter.
Collinsville coach Justin Baldia said he was pleased with the Lady Pirates’ second-half defensive adjustments.
“In the third quarter, our defensive rotations were better, and that’s what led to it,” Baldia said. “(No) second-chance points, keeping them out of the lane with the ball on one side of the floor, and that’s what I’m looking for.”
Collinsville freshman Caelyn Scott led the game with 12 points, while sophomore Addisyn McDonnell scored 10. Angelina Nguyen led the Gainesville JV with 7.
Callisburg played in the first game of the tournament. The Lady Cats fell 54-32 to Tom Bean.
The tournament continues through Saturday afternoon.