Girls Basketball

Carter has big night against old team as East eases past West

B’aunce Carter spent the better part of the past two years developing her skills in the post for the Belleville West Maroons. On Tuesday, Carter showed her former team how far she’s come in her first year at Belleville East.

Just nine games into her Lancers career, the 5-foot-10 Carter was unstoppable as she scored 25 points and led East to a 63-39 win before a large crowd in a Southwestern Conference game at Belleville East.

On the receiving end of several pinpoint passes from Kaylah Rainey and senior Brittney Nitz, Carter got behind the Maroons defense for several short jumpers. East (4-5 overall, 3-2 SWC) led its city rivals by a 24-20 margin at halftime, then broke the game open with a 15-2 scoring run over the first four minutes of the third quarter.

Carter, who transferred from West to East this season, scored 10 of her 25 points during the spurt when East took a 39-22 lead.

West (1-8, 1-2) got no closer than 12 points the rest of the night.

Carter’s performance was just what East coach Amanda Kemezys has been waiting to see. With Carter slowly learning the Lancers system, Rainey rounding into form after missing three games with a sprained right ankle and the rest of Lancers gaining confidence, East is coming together.

Kemezys asked Carter to stay within the framework of the offense Tuesday against her former team.

“Going up against her former team, I think it’s normal for a player to be excited,” Kemezys said. “But we talked to her before the game about running the offense and not trying to do too much. We didn’t want her to force anything, and B’Aunce didn’t. She played very well tonight.

“Kaylah and her play so well together, and B’Aunce did a great job of finishing.”

Rainey had eight points and 13 assists for East.

West was led by sophomore Shaniah Nunn, who scored 15 points. A 6-1 post player, Nunn scored six of her points in the second quarter as the Maroons cut an early 12-point deficit to four points at halftime.

“Shaniah is a player we need to touch the basketball every time down the court. We don’t need her to score all the time, but we need to get it her hands,” West coach Clayton Fisher said. “We’re getting better, and as long as the girls keep working hard to get better, we’ll have an enjoyable season.”

Carter scored the first three times she touched the basketball in the second half. Bryce Dowell and Nyah Ford also scored as the Lancers took complete control of the game.