Wednesday, October 20, 2021
Girls Basketball: Princeton’s Wooten Surpasses 1,000 Points (PHOTO GALLERY)

Girls Basketball: Princeton’s Wooten Surpasses 1,000 Points (PHOTO GALLERY)

Meredith Wooten stepped up to the free-throw line and fired up a shot.

The ball sank to the bottom of the net, and with that free throw, Wooten joined the 1,000-point club.

The game paused for a moment as Princeton head coach and Wooten’s mother, Paula Wooten, presented her daughter with a game ball to recognize her astounding achievement.

“Meredith didn’t realize she was as close as she was. She thought she was 20 or 25 points, so she really didn’t know. I’m proud of her, and it’s good to get it at home against a good team like Kinston,” Paula Wooten said after the game.

Once play resumed, Wooten and her teammates pulled out an impressive 47-42 victory over Kinston on Friday evening.

Fittingly, Wooten finished off the Vikings with a steal and a layup in the closing seconds. She ended the night with a game-high 21 points — officially now 1,008 for her career.

Anna Taylor dropped in 12 points. Leonna Nelson contributed seven points. Hailey Tart, Kayleigh Klein and London Cook all scored two points apiece for the Bulldogs.

“I was overall pleased because they (Kinston) were a lot bigger than we were, and they outmatch a lot in size, but we fought hard on the boards and did what we had to do to win,” Wooten said. “I was very pleased because Kinston is a very good team.”

After three quarters, the Vikings held a 34-30 lead but watched as Princeton gained the advantage. A three-pointer from Taylor and a pair of free throws by Tart gave the Bulldogs a 41-38 lead.

With just under four minutes left, Kinston attempted to answer.

The Viking’s Tatyana Jordan buried a two-point basket that cut Princeton’s lead down to 43-42, but the Vikings were unable to take back the lead as Princeton showed its poise and finished strong down the stretch.

It was Princeton’s defense that dealt the knockout blow for the Bulldogs. The Bulldogs got some key defensive stops and baskets in transition to get the win.

“The girls played really good defense,” Wooten said. “We told them if they block out and get rebounds, then it was our game.

“I was proud of them for not folding. The girls did well.”

Princeton (3-0 overall) starts Carolina 1A Conference play at home on Tuesday against North Duplin (0-1).

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