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Defense paved the way for Williamsburg Christian Academy during a decisive 58-20 win at home against Wakefield School in the quarterfinal round of the Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association Division III tournament Wednesday.
From the opening tip, WCA asserted itself against an overmatched Wakefield squad that struggled to contain the Eagles' offense and navigate through their defense.
The Eagles opened the game on a quick 6-0 run within the first three minutes of play. After Wakefield got on the board, WCA reeled off an 11-0 run that ballooned its lead to 17-2 with 2:36 left to play in the opening quarter.
At the heart of this run was WCA's defense, which finished the game with 22 steals and a plethora of transition points as a result. The Eagles use a half-court press not only to generate pressure and slow down opposing offenses, but also to increase their own intensity.
"If we sit in a 2-3 zone, we lose energy and it's just flat. It ruins our offense," WCA Coach Scott Jones said. "When we press, it gets everybody going and gives us the energy we need."
With WCA's offense and defense dominating, the Eagles held a comfortable 17-4 lead by the end of the first quarter. By halftime, WCA had extended its lead to 35-6 after outscoring Wakefield 15-6 in the second quarter.
WCA continued to impose its will against Wakefield in the second half as Charnissa Chillers, who scored an uncharacteristically quiet two points in the first half, came out and splashed back-to-back 3-pointers in the third quarter. Also contributing was Aquazia Jones, who scored six points in the quarter and led WCA with a game-high 16 points.
The Eagles were able to coast through a mostly uneventful fourth quarter and secure the commanding 38-point win against Wakefield in which the Owls shot 21 percent from the floor.
WCA (17-4) will now prepare to take on Richmond Christian at Richard Bland College in the VISAA Division III semifinals Friday.
Wakefield: 4 6 5 5 — 20
WCA: 17 15 18 8 — 58
Wakefield: Sanders 5, Olmstead 6, Miller 4, Parra 2, Guinney 3
WCA: Davie 3, A. Jones 16, Boger 9, Chillers 10, Franklin 12, T. Jones 8
3-point goals: Wakefield 1 (Guinney), WCA 9 (Davie, A. Jones 3, Boger 2, Chillers 2, T. Jones)