Annual Shoot for the Cure Girls Basketball Game

The Varsity Girls Basketball team at Hilliard Darby is a force to be reckoned with this winter season. With five games under their belt, as of now their record stands at 4-1. Some major wins for the girls team include Marysville, Delaware, Groveport-Madison, and cross-town rival, Hilliard Bradley.

  On Friday, December 14th, the Lady Panthers took on Worthington Kilbourne for their second home game of the season. They call this annual game “Shoot for the Cure.” The whole night was put together to raise awareness for breast cancer. On behalf of the Hilliard Darby Girls Basketball team, they dedicated the Shoot for the Cure game to Shakia Cook-Tufts, who is the sister of head coach Tay Tufts. At the game, both programs also sold pink shooting shirts where all the proceeds from that and the additional donations were generously given to the American Cancer Society. The Hilliard Darby Panthers even wore their pink jerseys to contribute to this special night.

  With just 2 seniors on the Darby team, they are a young and energetic group. During the first quarter, point guard Sydney Wyngarden and her teammates were controlling the game. At the end of the first quarter the Lady Panthers had a comfortable lead over the Wolves, 15-3.

  Before the game I asked Senior Sydney Wyngarden about her thoughts on the game and if their opponents were a challenge.

  “They are young but they play hard with a lot of pressure. If we do what we need to do and focus on our goals we should come out with a win,” she replied.

  I also asked Sydney what she thought about the team’s overall strengths and weaknesses.

  “Our strengths are we always go hard and bring the energy even when things may not be going our way. Weaknesses for us are sometimes we don’t communicate as much as we should,” she explained.

  As the Panthers moved into the second quarter, they kept up their high intensity. The Hilliard Darby team was very positive and maintained good focus. This cancer benefit game had a great atmosphere as both teams continued to battle each other. Going into half-time, the Panthers were feeling confident with a score in their favor, 26-10.

  I got the chance to talk to center Annie Rauch, who is also a Senior. I asked her how she thought the team chemistry had been so far.

  “The chemistry has been really good so far. I think this has been the best year since I’ve been in high school as far as the team being on the same page. We all have very similar goals in mind,” Rauch shared.

  Annie continued to share how the team prepares for tough games.

  “Our coaches do a great job of scouting other teams, so we always are very prepared going into games. We go over scouting reports a lot and practice hard,” she stated.

  By the end of the night, the game was awarded to the hard working Darby Panthers, with a final score of 44-39. The girls are 3-0 in their conference and move on to having a 5-1 overall record. The whole team is something special that no one in Darby’s history has seen before, with the collective group all showing great contribution. A couple girls for the Panthers are close to breaking school records and continue to perform at a high level. They will continue their season with a home game on Friday, December 21th vs. Olentangy Berlin at 7pm. You can also go watch both the girls and boys basketball programs play at Quicken Loans Arena on December 23rd vs. Watterson. The boys team plays at 2pm, followed by the Cavs vs. Bulls at 6pm and the girls team plays at 9pm.

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