In their temporary home away from home, Hilton Head Christian Academy’s juggernaut kept the engine rolling Wednesday night. Despite playing without superstar Dior Shelton, the Eagles dominated on all sides of the court, putting five in double figures on their way to a 71-17 rout of visiting Colleton Prep.
Molly Smith and Mackenzie Buchter scored 12 points each to lead a balanced scoring effort for HHCA, while Mikayla Kelca added 11, and both Devon Yarde and Mary Yanker put up 10.
HHCA poured in the first 24 points of the contest, using their elite athleticism and defensive intensity to force turnovers and score on fast breaks. The Eagles spread the ball around extremely well, finding open teammates for quality looks at the basket.
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There was no answer for the speed of Yarde and Smith, as the dynamic guard duo turned their defense into offense, zooming their way to the rim and scoring six points each to set the tone in the opening quarter. Buchter also scored six points in the frame, including a sweet jumper as the clock expired to finish off an impressive 28-4 start.
HHCA kept the strong offensive production going in the second with Mikayla Kelca’s domination in the paint, scoring seven points in the period to pace the Eagles on a 15-5 run. Kelca’s last bucket of the frame came with just 1.2 seconds left, as the senior got an inbounds feed from Caroline Yanker and quickly put home the layup to go into the locker room up 43-9.
The second half featured a running clock, but the Eagles still put together a busy second half, locking down on defense and outscoring the War Hawks 15-3 in the third quarter. The Yanker sisters led the way, scoring four each in the period. It took until the fourth quarter, but Skylar Smith converted HHCA’s first and only three-pointer of the game. The stellar shooter scored five of her nine in the final frame to put the finishing touches on a sensational all-around team performance.
The Eagles showed off their strong depth in the contest, as eight different players scored three or more points.
Rachel Wright led the War Hawks with seven points, including a pair of threes.
HHCA (19-1, 9-0) finishes off the regular-season slate on Feb.17, hosting Hilton Head Prep.
Colleton Prep (1-10, 1-6) travels to Hilton Head Prep on Thursday.
Written by Wes Kerr