By BRIAN CUNNIFF
WILDWOOD — It’s something you might see in an adult recreation league, but not necessarily in a high school game.
But, perhaps in this pandemic-affected season, it made perfect sense.
The Glassboro High School girls basketball team finished Friday’s game against Wildwood with only four players, yet the Bulldogs somehow hung on for a 50-44 victory in a matchup of two of South Jersey’s better Group I teams.
“They’re Bulldog strong,” Glassboro coach Kevin Timbers said with pride of his players. “We’ve had injuries and some other people out and we knew we had to come in here and play hard against a good team.”
Glassboro (3-0) started the game with just five players in uniform. The Bulldogs were left with four after Jakya Jenkins fouled out with 3 minutes, 59 seconds remaining and Glassboro holding a 40-34 lead.
Wildwood made numerous charges, twice cutting its deficit to three points, but Glassboro sophomores Alexis Davis and Karma Payne combined to make 10 straight free throws in the fourth quarter.
Davis, an emerging talent who’s easily a Division I college prospect, poured in 21 points and grabbed 19 rebounds in the win. She had 15 points in the second half.
Wildwood, particularly junior Ava Troiano, did an admirable job on Davis despite her big numbers. Davis had scored 36 and 32 points, respectively, in Glassboro’s first two games. Payne added 14 points, scoring 12 of them after halftime.
Imene Fathi netted 23 points for Wildwood (2-1), knocking down three three-pointers in the fourth quarter. But the Lady Warriors, while trailing by three, missed a pair of open layup attempts after a steal with a little less than two minutes to go. Payne then made a pair of free throws on Glassboro’s next possession and Wildwood never truly threatened again.
Jenna Hans added 10 points and eight assists for Wildwood.
Wildwood shot just 8 for 17 from the foul line, while Glassboro was 15 for 17.