The first week of the season couldn't have gone better for the New Berlin West girls basketball team, as the Vikings picked up a pair of nonconference wins to open at 2-0.
After downing Burlington in its season opener Nov. 15, New Berlin West overcame a halftime deficit to take down Waukesha West on Nov. 17.
"Overall, I feel like we played pretty well," New Berlin West coach Collin Thompson said. "We competed like we need to, to win games consistently. Our offense was pretty efficient, and we didn’t turn the ball over that much. We still have a lot to work with on reads through the offense. Defensively we have to get better to keep teams out of the lane."
The Vikings jumped out to a 20-12 halftime lead en route to a 49-36 victory over Burlington.
Junior Alyssa Nelson led New Berlin West with 15 points, hitting three of her six 3-point attempts. Senior Ewelina Schlomann added 13 points and five rebounds, and senior Skylar Berens had nine points.
"We got out to a big lead and had a cushion most of the game," Thompson said. "They had a 10-0 run to end the first half and to start the second half, which resulted in a 7-10-point cushion for the entire second half. We played into their hands during that run, which allowed them to get back in the game, which made it competitive the entire second half."
New Berlin West shot 40.4 percent from the field and went six for 18 from beyond the arc.
Senior Morgan Henrichs filled the stat sheet with seven rebounds, six assists and four steals. Senior Lily Adkison grabbed five rebounds and dished out four assists.
Trailing 18-13 at halftime, the Vikings scored 36 points in the second half in a 49-46 win over Waukesha West.
"We continued to be patient on offense and attack seams as they presented themselves," Thompson said. "We told the girls at half that we just needed to knock down a couple shots, and the momentum would swing into our favor. As we did that, and narrowed the gap, we were able to throw in some different defenses to keep West off balance and fed the momentum to the offensive side of the court."
Nelson hit inside jumpers and a 3-pointer during West's run to take the lead. Maddie Fritz hit big shots, and junior Kierra Carter had two big baskets down the stretch. Berens and Nelson combined to go 7-for-7 at the free-throw line to help the Vikings hold off the Wolverines.
West hit a 3-pointer with two seconds left to pull to within 49-46, but West got the ball into Berens and ran out the clock.
Nelson finished with 21 points, six rebounds and two assists on 7-of-12 shooting.
"When the chips are down, she finds a way to make plays and pick up our team," Thompson said. "Seniors such as Morgan, Lily and Ewelina all stepped up in clutch situations. Defending, taking care of the ball, hitting clutch shots. This comes with maturity, and our seniors have shown that early on this season."
Berens chipped in with seven points, while Fritz had six points and Henrichs had four rebounds and seven assists.
New Berlin West was scheduled to play at Brookfield East on Tuesday, Nov. 22. The Vikings will play Green Bay Preble in the Brookfield Central Thanksgiving Shootout at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 26.