Vermillion's Tanager girls accelerated through a torrid first half, survived a sluggish third quarter, then refused to let Parkston back into the game Friday as they won for the second straight night.
Their 57-34 domination of a one-loss Parkston team, preceded by a 53-50 road win at Sioux Falls Christian the previous night, lifted the Tanagers to a 5-2 record.
Josie Huber scored Vermillion's first 10 points herself, 15 in the first quarter and 22 in the first half en route to a 28-point performance in leading the VHS offense.
Three three-point field goals were part of Huber's smoking-hot first period after which the Tanagers led by 18-9. An 8-0 run as halftime approached allowed Vermillion to go from a 10-point lead to a 32-14 margin, and it was 36-17 at the intermission after Brooke Schwasinger beat the buzzer with two of her 12 points.
Up to that point VHS had shot 61 percent from the field, including five of six from long range, while Parkston was 2-of-11 in its three-point attempts.
While the VHS offense went suddenly cold in the third quarter, Coach Nick Mayer's athletes still made their defensive stops at the other end and forced Parkston into taking tough shots. At one point when the Tanagers led 42-20, Parkston tried to go on a run of its own, getting to within 18 but then missing three straight three-point attempts which, if successful, might have put some pressure on the Tanagers. But it was still 42-27 after three periods.
Neither team could connect on short shots as the final stanza began, and VHS had scored just six points over a 10-minute stretch since halftime. But a free throw from Schwasinger and a bank shot by Mackenzie Huber were crucial as the Tanagers restored their lead to a comfortable 45-27 spread. As the minutes ticked away, the Tanagers showed maturity and patience in killing time and waiting for good opportunities to score. They also made nine of 12 free throws in the final quarter.
Besides Josie Huber's 28 and Schwasinger's 12 points, Mackenzie Huber contributed six, Blair Gilkyson five, Courtney Johnson four and Allison Heine two points. The Tanagers committed only seven turnovers.
For Parkston Krista Radke had eight points, Alexis Horstman eight and Erica Herrold seven.
In the win at Sioux Falls Christian, the Tanagers led 23-22 at halftime. Schwasinger stepped up big with a 19-point game, complemented by Josie Huber's 14 points and five steals. For Christian, Haley McCarron had 23 points and 14 rebounds while Kristin Stern added 13 points and five steals.
After playing Madison this past Tuesday and hosting Lennox last night (Thursday), the Tanager girls hit the road to Elk Point-Jefferson next Tuesday and to Lennox next Friday. The next home game will be Jan. 22 against West Central.