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Western girls in first place as two players hit 1,000-point milestones

By Bob Sutton

Special to The Alamance News

Already a game with first place in the Central 3-A Conference at stake, the Western Alamance girls’ basketball team added other exciting elements.

There was the 77-56 victory against rival Eastern along with two milestones reached within minutes of each other Tuesday night.

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Western juniors Allie Sykes and Tina Bowers both tallied their 1,000th career points.

“It was a real electric feeling and the game was tight – most of it,” Bowers said.

Bowers racked up 28 points, Sykes had 16 and teammate Emma Johnson had 10 in the home victory. The Warriors (13-6 overall, 7-1 Central 3-A Conference) won their eighth game in a row.

“Just for us to hold on to first place,” Sykes said. “We were ready.”

The outcome snapped a six-game winning streak for Eastern (11-8, 5-2), which hadn’t lost since falling to Western in early January.

Western’s 32-23 halftime lead shrunk, but Sykes banked in a 3-pointer and Johnson followed with a 3 for a 48-37 edge. Johnson connected again from long range before the first milestone of the night.

Sykes made both free throws with 34.2 seconds to play in the third quarter, giving her 1,000 points and stretching the lead to 55-37.

Then it was Bowers’ turn. She drained a 3-pointer with 4:23 left.

“A real surreal moment,” Bowers said. “1,000 points, that’s a lot of hard work. I was in the moment.”

In both cases, Western coach Sean Quinn called timeout so an announcement could be made regarding the achievements.

“It’s amazing,” Quinn said. “For them to have that moment on the same night is awesome.”

Sykes and Bowers, who played as a freshman at Southern Alamance, are three-year varsity players.

A fast tempo helped the Warriors repel Eastern.

“We really ran the ball and it went from there,” Sykes said.

“They’re strong, physical,” Quinn said of the Eagles. “The pace of the game needs to be fast for us.”

Eastern’s Nicole Hester scored 17 points and Makala Thompson had 14 points. The Eagles have given up more than 61 points twice this season, both times vs. Western.

“It was our defense,” Eastern guard Aliya Trollinger said. “We can run fast, but sometimes we have to slow it down.”

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