Haas fuels Pioneer stampede past Indians

Haas fuels Pioneer stampede past Indians
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“I only have eyes for you,” says Wataugas Brooke Byrd as she drives the lane toward the basket.

By David Rogers. January 11, 2019. HICKORY, NC — With a 5-point outburst in the second quarter, Watauga guard Cailey Haas recorded a game-high 12 points, but it was a tenacious defensive effort by the entire Watauga team that throttled down St. Stephens. The Pioneers cruised to a convincing, 48-18 win over the Indians.

COVER IMAGE: Cailey Haas (2) hustles after a loose ball vs. St. Stephens. All photographic images by David Rogers for Blowing Rock News

There was never a need for the Pioneers to circle the wagons or even think about surrendering in this game as they held a 16-4 lead after the first quarter and 27-8 advantage over the Indians by intermission. Then the St. Stephens five managed only another 10 points for the entire second half.

Brelyn Sturgill shoots from long distance.

Coming, as it did, as the third game in four days for the Pioneers — including back to back games on Thursday and Friday — Watauga’s performance against St Stephens spoke as much about the coaching staff’s substitution management as it did about the team’s roster depth. While the starters could very well have been leg-weary after a tough loss to McDowell on Tuesday and a rivalry win over Ashe County on Thursday, the return of reserves Paige Bolick and Libby Warren — as well as more playing time for sophomore power forward Chelsi Hodges — gave plenty of opportunities for resting the front-liners.

“I’m happy to have a good road win,” Watauga head coach Laura Barry observed to Blowing Rock News after the game. “I thought we struggled to be consistent tonight and struggled to execute on offense compared to last night (at Ashe County). We were much more solid last night.

Rebekah Farthing maneuvers at the top of the key.

“It was plenty good enough to win,” Barry added, “which is exciting, but we need to get better at some of the little things that will help us against the top teams in our league.

“A win for the third game of this week’s road trip is a credit to our depth,” the now veteran head coach continued. “We were able to save some legs with our substitutions. Early in the week not having Paige (Bolick) and Taylor (Lipford)…having them back is big. Plus, having our bigs (Molly Ward and Chelsi Hodges) play well and perform has really helped us this week.”

Barry singled out both Haas and Ward for high praise for their performances against the Indians.

“Cailey Hass played exceptionally hard both yesterday and today,” noted Barry of the senior guard, who spent a lot Thursday night’s game at Ashe County fighting for the ball on the floor. “I think she still led us in dives tonight, but this wasn’t as much of an ‘on the floor’ type of game. She didn’t take a possession off, which I am proud of.

Haas wants to drive.

“Molly Ward is coming along, too,” Barry said of her junior center. “She is doing a better job of attacking the boards and establishing a presence inside, which is exciting to see.

Next week, the Pioneers (7-5 overall, 3-1 in Northwestern Conference) will face both of their chief league rivals in hosting Hickory ( 8-3, 3-1) at Lentz Eggers Gym on Tuesday, then will travel to Morganton to face Freedom (13-1, 4-0).



  • 12 – Cailey Haas
  • 9 – Rebekah Farthing
  • 8 – Brelyn Sturgill
  • 6 – Brooke Byrd
  • 4 – Chelsi Hodges
  • 3 – Taylor Lipford
  • 2 –
    Byrd finishes off a fast break.

    Molly Ward

  • 2- Paige Bolick
  • 2 – Libby Warren

St. Stephens

  • 4 – Alaysha McHenry
  • 4 – Elizabeth Sumpter
  • 4 – Kaylee McGlamery
  • 4 – Adri Tomlinson
  • 1 – Lazariah Winkler
  • 1 – Katelyn McGlamery

About The Author

As Editor and Publisher of Blowing Rock News, David Rogers has chosen a second professional career instead of retirement. For more than 35 years, he served in the financial services industry, principally in institutional equity research. He grew up in the oilfields north of Bakersfield, California and was a high school English major and honors student. From an economically disadvantaged family background, he worked his way through college (on grounds crew and in dining hall, as well as advertising sales for college newspapers), attending Johnston College at the University of Redlands, Claremont McKenna College, and California State University, Bakersfield. Other jobs to pay for college included a Teamsters Union job in South Central Los Angeles, a roustabout in the central California oilfields, and moving sprinkler pipe and hoeing weeds in the cotton fields west of Bakersfield. Rogers' financial services industry career took him from Bakersfield to La Jolla and San Diego, then to Chicago, New York City, San Francisco, Newport Beach and Charlotte before arriving in the High Country in 2000 to take a volunteer position coaching the rugby team at Appalachian State University and write independent stock market research. He spent three years as a senior financial writer for a global financial PR firm with offices in Los Angeles, New York, Shanghai, Beijing, Tel Aviv, and Frankfort (Germany). Rogers is the author of "The 90% Solution: Higher Returns, Less Risk" (2006, John Wiley & Co., New York). He is married to wife Kim (Jenkins Realtors), and shares in the joy provided by her three grown children and five grandchildren.

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