CALDWELL — With the Western Idaho District championship on the line, the New Plymouth girls basketball team called upon its senior leader, Josie Thurman.
Thurman showed exactly why the Pilgrims (18-4) wanted the ball in her hands. She sank the game winner at the buzzer to deliver the ’Grims their third district title in four years in a 45-44 win over Cole Valley Christian Thursday night at Vallivue High School.
“It felt so great,” Thurman said. “I’m so proud of my team for the way we all battled tonight and never gave up.”
The ’Grims were finally able to beat the Chargers in their third attempt after falling to them twice during the regular season.
“Revenge is great,” sophomore Kenzie White said. “And we’ve always had it in us to beat Cole Valley, but I think it was our matter of execution. We did that the whole game.”
White was the leading scorer for New Plymouth with a game-high 15 points.
“It was most definitely one of my best games,” White said. “It was great to put up some shots.”
White was one of several players to have an impact for the ’Grims. Junior Brianna Killion owned the boards with a team-high eight rebounds.
“I knew that I needed to keep Cole Valley from offensive putbacks, and that’s what I focused on,” Killion said. “Each and every player on my team adds to our victories, and rebounds were my contribution tonight.”
Senior Dusty Goff also made her presence known at the rim with five rebounds.
“Dusty and Brianna were incredible tonight,” coach Denise Oliver said.
Sophomore Aidrie Voile swatted away shot after shot as she led the team in blocks with five.
“It took all of us tonight,” Oliver said. “Every kid that was eligible to play played and all contributed. Unbelievable effort for the entire game.”
With the win, New Plymouth moves on to the state tournament at Kuna High School, beginning Thursday. The ’Grims will face the winner of Marsing and Wendell at 6:15 p.m..
“Well, the plan is to go all the way,” Thurman said. “We just have to work hard and play together.”