No coach, no problem. The Arroyo Valley High School girls basketball team won in yet another blowout following their triple-digit victory against Bloomington last week.
The Hawks took on the Coyotes of Indian Springs on Wednesday without their head coach, Michael Anderson, who was suspended for two games after their incredible 161-2 victory over Bloomington.
The absence of their coach did not prove to be a problem, as the Hawks defeated the Coyotes 80-19 in the San Andreas League opener at Indian Springs High.
“It was really tough, but I think we pulled it together in his honor,” senior Nidirah Stephens told the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin. “We support our coach 110 percent. I think it turned out OK.”
Arroyo Valley dominated from the tip off, jumping out into an early 19 point lead and forcing Indian Springs to commit 22 turnovers in the first quarter alone.
Nick Anderson, who was filling in as acting head coach for his father, was not pleased with the amount of points his overachieving team was converting from the turnovers.
“I had to burn a timeout and get into them a little bit and let them know, we have control of this game," he said. “It’s nothing different. We just have a different coach. We’re still going to run our game plan, like we always do.”
Anderson decided to tone down the full-court trapping defense in the second half after star senior guard Tamara Trigg got in some foul trouble. Trigg sat out most of the second half.
All nine players who dressed got some play time and Anderson said he did not substitute any differently than he normally would have despite the lopsided score.
Freshman guard Antania Watkins got some shine, scoring a game-high 23 points to lead Arroyo Valley. Sophomore Omari Smith contributed 17 points. Ky Fantroy scored a team-high six points for Indian Springs (4-9 overall, 0-1 league) in their first-ever league girls basketball game.
“The girls responded how we expected,” Anderson said. “They were hyped, and then with the suspension, they came down because they are super close with my father… They were kind of deflated.”
The Arroyo Valley Hawks (15-1, 1-0) will play at San Gorgonio on Friday. Head coach Michael Anderson will return for their home game against San Bernardino on Monday. The game is part of a MLK Day event.