Platte County on 4-game winning streak

Since stumbling through a three-game losing streak in the middle of January, the Platte County has righted the ship, so to speak.

The Pirates picked up a 57-36 victory against Belton in a Suburban Conference Blue Division contest on Monday, Feb. 5, at Platte County High School.

The victory was the fourth in a row for Chris Stubbs’ squad, which improved to 13-7 on the year and 4-1 in league play.

 CODY THORN/Citizen photo Platte County junior Trista Amos, middle, looks up at a referee who called a jump ball situation after she battled Belton’s Ta’Kyla Canady for the loose ball during a game Monday, Feb. 5, at Platte County High School. 

CODY THORN/Citizen photo
Platte County junior Trista Amos, middle, looks up at a referee who called a jump ball situation after she battled Belton’s Ta’Kyla Canady for the loose ball during a game Monday, Feb. 5, at Platte County High School. 

Platte County had a six-game winning streak at one point this year, but dropped three straight between Jan. 16-22. That stretch included dropping games to state-ranked Lincoln Prep and Kearney and a rematch against Smithville, always a tough team in Class 4.

Since the loss to Kearney on Jan. 22, the Pirates have won four straight league games and the closest game in that bunch has been a nine-point win.

Platte County used a 22-point first quarter to set the tone in Monday’s win, as its pressure defense led to turnovers by Belton  — 19 total — and some of those led to 18 points for the Pirates.

The key in the first quarter was Jaycie Stubbs’ shooting as she drained four of her five 3-pointers in the opening eight minutes.

“We have been making shots,” Chris Stubbs said. “Anytime you make shots, it makes you look good.”

Up 22-11 after the first quarter, the Platte County lead jumped to 16 points midway through the second quarter. Foul trouble then started to hurt the Pirates and Belton — also the Pirates — pulled within 34-25 at the break.

Platte County opened the third quarter on a 7-0 run with points from Rockey Chambers, Stubbs and Hannah Valentine. The trio combined for 47 of the team’s points in the victory.

“They were playing zone, so it was pretty easy to shoot,” said Jaycie Stubbs, who finished with 18 points. “We are definitely playing our best basketball. I think we can play with anyone in the state. Coach called us chameleons. We change to whatever we are playing.”

Platte County took a 43-29 lead going into the fourth and lead grew to 20 on a pair of free throws from Hannah Valentine — who had a game-high 21 — that made it 52-32.

“I thought we shared the ball well,” said Chris Stubbs, whose squad had four different players score in the first and fourth quarters. “We made the extra pass when we needed to.”

Platte County 57, Raytown South 41

Despite a solid scoring first quarter, the Pirates were trailing 27-26 at halftime in a Suburban Conference Blue Division game on Thursday, Feb. 1 at home.

The Cardinals, down 17-12 after the first quarter, rallied and limited the Pirates to only two buckets in the second quarter.

That scoring drought went away in the third quarter as Platte County scored 23 points — while allowing six — and took command back.

Lauren Walker scored all eight of her points in the third quarter, while Hannah Valentine contributed nine of her team-high 12 points.

The lead for the Pirates could’ve been greater had they made free throws. Platte County was 2-for-9 from the line in the third quarter and 3-for-8 in the fourth quarter. Overall, the team shot 11-for-33 from the charity strip.

“We didn’t shoot well, we only made 11 and that kept them in it,” Chris Stubbs said. “The nice thing is we shot 33 free throws, but we got to make those.”

Platte County had a balanced scoring attack in the win. Meghan Amos joined Valentine in double figures with 10 points, while Walker, Rockey Chambers and Jaycie Stubbs all had eight.