As of Wednesday, January 9, 2019
SUNNYSIDE Sunnyside Christian High School’s Sydney Banks ignited her team’s offensive charge from the opening tip-off to the final buzzer as the Lady Knights soundly defeated the Mustangs from Trout Lake in a conference home game 64-26, Friday evening.
The sharp-shooting sophomore said she has been feeling more confident in her shots and attributed that to her dad’s belief in her abilities.
Banks’ game day routine consists of getting into the gym around 8:15 a.m. and shooting for 45-minutes with her dad.
“I woke up early and came to the gym and shoot to get a feel for it,” Banks described. The 5’9” perimeter stretch 3-player knew she was in the zone and ready for a good game.
Banks led a balanced scoring attack with 14 points, while she knocked down a trio of 3-pointers in the opening quarter and finished the game with four from behind the arch. Banks was a perfect 2-of-2 from the free throw line.
“Tonight, actually, I was trying to set the record for most 3’s in a game, it’s six,” Banks confessed, who decided not to inform coach Bosma about her plan because she did not want to “… jinx it and not hit anything.”
“It didn’t go as planned, I only hit four,” Banks stated.
The Lady Knights started the game on a 15-0 run and took a 39-8 lead into halftime. Jenna Andringa and Madi Candanoza each had 12, and Abby Bravo added 11.
Sunnyside Christian improved to (1-0, Greater Columbia Gorge and 7-4, overall) and Trout Lake fell to (0-1, Greater Columbia Gorge and 6-6, overall).
“We’re trying to encourage that balance from the inside to the outside… when a team does pack it in, you’ve got to be able to pull them out by making shots,” SCHS Varsity Coach Brian Bosma explained.
The Lady Knights made 14 field goals, seven 3-pointers and 15-of-21 free throws. Sunnyside Christian outscored Trout Lake 25-18 in the second half as it kept up the intensity on both ends of the court and finished the game strong.
“Even when they try to play us man, we set a target for how many threes to take, and if we’re below it, then I would keep encouraging them… you’ve got to shoot it, you’ve got to shoot it, you’ve got to shoot it,” Bosma said.
During Thursday night’s, non-conference game against Pomeroy, Sunnyside Christian’s shots were unable to find the bottom of the net in a 30-point loss. The visiting Lady Knights were limited to two-points in the first and fourth quarters as their offensive confidence would be tested the next night against Trout Lake.
“Because you have to have that confidence, so when a team does pack it in and says, ‘we’re not going to give you any layups,’ that you step into those threes and believe, you’ve got it,” acknowledged Bosma.
When struggling to knock down their shots, proven shooters have short memories while they find other ways to score. Once the ball was tipped off Friday night, the Lady Knights regained their shooting touch and offensive form.
Good teams seek to immediately return to the hardwood in challenging their resolve for playing winning team ball. The Lady Knights were no different.
“Back into the gym tomorrow morning at 9 a.m. and then on Sunday at 2 p.m.,” Banks confirmed. “I hope to get that 3-point record this year.”