GLASSBORO – Alexis Davis decided it was time to take control.
In a game that may very well have been a preview of the South Jersey Group 1 championship matchup, it was the 5-foot, 10-inch Glassboro freshman who took things into her own hands.
“It was time to take over,” she said after Glassboro held on to beat Wildwood, 34-30, in a tight game where the largest lead was six points. “It was time to help out my teammates.”
Glassboro, currently slotted as the top seed in the upcoming sectional tournament, grabbed a 22-21 lead over Wildwood, the current No. 2 seed, going into the fourth quarter after trailing by four at halftime.
Davis, who had been setting up under the basket or in the corner, moved out front and became the primary ball-handler. That brought Wildwood’s leading rebounder, Winter Favre, out to guard her.
After Favre hit a foul shot to open the fourth quarter and tie the game, Glassboro’s Deji Cook hit her only shot of the game, a three-pointer, from the right side on a feed from Davis to give Glassboro a 25-22 lead.
Wildwood broke through the Bulldogs’ press and got a layup from Leah Benichou to close the gap, but Davis answered with a three-pointer from the top of the key and a layup to put Glassboro up 30-24.
It was an impressive couple of trips down the floor by the freshman who is leading the Tri-County Conference in scoring and rebounding.
“She's versatile,” said Glassboro coach Kevin Timbers. “She can play anywhere from the one to the five. She can come out if we need her to and at times she is going to have a five or four on her when she does that. That is why we did it.”
Again, Wildwood answered back. This time getting six straight points from Jenna Hans to tie the game, but Davis scored on a drive down the lane and Hannah Sheffield hit two free throws to give the Bulldogs the win.
Davis finished with a game-high 18 points for Glassboro which improved to 18-2. Hans and Imene Fahti had 10 points apiece for the Warriors who are now 16-4.
“Wildwood is a great team,” Davis said. “They execute well, but once the first quarter went by and we saw how they played, how they passed the ball, that’s when we started to cut out the passing lanes. And once everybody got into the game, we started to pass the ball better too.”
Timbers said the Bulldogs aren’t accustomed to playing such a low scoring game, but he saw the benefit in this with the tournament just three weeks down the road.
“They have a tradition of winning Group 1 titles so it was good for us to come out and play hard against them,” he said. “Thirty-four points is about half of what we usually score, but we have to learn how to play these types of games. We have to learn how to win the tough games, the low scoring games, as well as the ones we score more points in.”
Wildwood coach Teresa Cuniff said her team needed this type of game against a tough opponent on the road and saw some things to iron out before the tournament rolls around.
“I thought we played hard, but we made some mistakes, had a lot of turnovers and we didn’t execute our offense good enough to win,” Cuniff said. “But we’ll be all right. That team is pretty good but we’ll be ready the next time if we play them again in the playoffs.
"We're disappointed, but we are also optimistic."
Wildwood 6 11 4 9 - 30
Glassboro 6 7 9 12 - 34
Wildwood: Leah Benichou 2, Jenna Hans 10, Imene Fahti 10, Ava Troiano 2, Winter Favre 6.
Glassboro: Karma Payne 4, Alexis Davis 18, Deji Cook 5, Trinee Gadson 3, Hannah Sheffield 4.