The upside for Northwest Guilford’s girls basketball team was clear for parts of the opening game of the HAECOisHiring.com Invitational.
The ball was going into the basket for a team that has encountered challenges at that end of the floor. That’s the part on which the Vikings want to build.
“It’s always a little difficult in the beginning of the season,” junior Madison Young said. “I feel like we’re doing a lot better as a team.”
Northwest was good enough to turn back Dudley 51-32 on Monday afternoon at the Greensboro Coliseum Special Events Center.
The top-seeded Vikings (7-3) match up with Page (3-5), a 39-16 winner against Greensboro Day School, in the semifinals at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Vikings coach Haley Hackett said the offense can come around for what’s mostly a young roster for one of the region’s top programs. There have been signs of it all working out.
“You can kind of see how it can go when we all mesh together,” Hackett said. “When we’re on, we’re on.”
That was the case in the first quarter when Northwest posted 20 points against Dudley. That came about through good ball movement and the ability to break through the Panthers’ press, so the Vikings shot 7-for-12 from the field. They didn’t score more than 13 points any other quarter.
Northwest hasn’t reached the 60-point mark since the season opener.
The Vikings don’t have to light up the scoreboard to be successful, something they’ve already realized. Their style might indicate that low-scoring games can work out fine.
“We want to be patient with the basketball,” Hackett said. “That works to our favor.”
Maslyn Mosbacher racked up 19 points and also spearheaded the Northwest defense with eight steals. Young scored 14 points, connecting for four of Northwest’s six three-point baskets, and Sophia Apple pulled in 11 rebounds.
Young said there are signs that the Vikings could break through for more consistent offense.
“All of us talking and listening has been helping,” she said. “It has been a lot more efficient. Of course, some of that comes from the defense. I feel we can do 100 times better.”
It can all come together for Northwest.
“I expect the scoring to happen if we get the shots we’re supposed to,” Hackett said.
The Vikings are familiar with the tournament formula. They reached the title game of a similar three-day tournament last week at Knightdale before falling to Cardinal Gibbons.