DAILY JOURNAL SPORTS CORRESPONDENT
Whiteland junior guard Sydney Mize didn’t get her head down after missing her first three 3-point attempts.
Instead, Mize responded to hit her next four 3-pointers during Whiteland’s 65-37 girls basketball rout of visiting Shelbyville in nonconference action Thursday night.
“I owe that to my teammates because I feed off their energy, and once they start going, I start going,” said Mize, who finished with 14 points. “After a while I got in a rhythm and I just started feeding off them, and they started feeding off me. We just collaborated really well.”
Whiteland coach Kyle Shipp said Mize can definitely heat up from the field.
“It’s just a matter of getting her some confidence and getting her going,” Shipp said.
“From here to this point, she’s had some up-and-down games, but hopefully this springboards her to a good stretch run at the end of the year.”
Freshman center Mackenzie Blazek helped open the outside game by scoring 14 of her team-high 22 points in the first quarter for the Warriors (8-11). The 6-1 Blazek also contributed a team-high 13 rebounds.
“Without her dominating the first half, we wouldn’t be getting as many kick-outs as we did later on in the game,” Mize said.
Shipp said the plan was to establish an inside presence early.
“Once (Blazek) got going, it opened up the floor so our shooters could get going,” Shipp said. “I thought our transition offense was pretty good. (Blazek) is playing at a real high level, and our girls are doing a great job of finding her in great spots to score.”
The Warriors grabbed a 16-5 lead in the opening quarter and expanded the cushion to 39-16 by halftime.
“We just wanted to get better every possession,” Shipp said. “We wanted to make we started fast and finished strong and make sure we got ourselves better to play Franklin on Saturday.
“I felt we did a pretty good job executing our offensive and defensive game plan. I’m proud of my girls.”
The Warriors host Franklin (8-10) in Mid-State Conference action at 2:30 p.m. Saturday.
Morgan Parker and Alexis Tackett each scored 11 points for Shelbyville (6-11).
The Golden Bears committed 22 turnovers, four more than Whiteland.