Fueled by a scorching performance from beyond the arc and 21 points from sophomore Katie Rodney, Bluffton girls basketball finished a season sweep of its rivals across the bridge Tuesday in a 51-33 victory at Hilton Head High to stay unbeaten in Region 7-4A play.
After struggling to hit their outside shots for most of Saturday’s matchup with Beaufort High, the Bobcats were dialed-in from long range at The Nest, connecting for five 3-pointers in just the first half.
Bluffton’s dynamic offense was too much for the Seahawks early on, racing out to a 9-0 lead thanks to a Tacoya Heyward triple and four points from Rodney. The sophomore duo was also dominant on the defensive side, as Rodney’s quick hands led to a bucket in transition to push the margin to 11.
Bluffton continued to stymie a potent Seahawk attack in the second period, holding sophomore phenom Lynda Young off the board in the quarter and limiting her team to just three points. Ja’laina Mosley came alive for the Bobcats with a pair of triples, and Rodney added another to build a commanding 25-9 lead at halftime.
Hilton Head made sure to get the ball in the hands of Young in the second half, and the Seahawk star went to work in the paint, scoring 10 points in the third quarter while feasting on the glass. But Rodney provided the answer for Bluffton with her powerful drives to the rim and her terrific outside shooting, adding nine points of her own to extend the lead to 39-22.
Hilton Head continued to ride Young’s offense down the stretch, but it wasn’t enough to surmount the large deficit as Heyward and Rodney each sank another three to cement the convincing road win.
Rodney was unstoppable from downtown while providing a standout defensive effort, leading all scorers with 21 points along with eight rebounds, five assists, and three steals. Mosley put up another strong showing for the Bobcats with 10 points and four boards on 2-of-4 shooting from beyond the arc, while Heyward turned in a fantastic line of nine points, eight rebounds, six assists, and five steals including a trio of 3-pointers.
Young excelled for the Seahawks after a slow start, scoring 16 of her team-high 19 points in the second half while adding 13 rebounds and five steals.
Bluffton (15-1, 8-0) returns home Friday to face crosstown foe May River. Hilton Head High (7-10, 2-4) faces a crucial test at home Friday against Colleton County.
By Wes Kerr
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