Polk Middle’s Bailey Staton leads a Wolverine fast break during Tuesday’s game

First-half defense boosts Polk Middle girls past Apple Valley

Polk County Middle proved once again Tuesday that it’s almost impossible to lose a basketball game when the opponent doesn’t score.

The Wolverines kept Apple Valley off the scoreboard until the final minute of the first half, building a 15-point halftime lead en route to a 30-13 victory at Polk in the season opener for both teams.

Polk Middle built a 17-0 lead before Apple Valley finally got its first basket of the game with 56 seconds left in the second quarter.

The Knights did put together a 5-2 run to open the third period and pull within 12 at 19-7, but Gavionna Carson scored off a nice pass from Mia Bradley, and Bradley followed with a pair of baskets to halt the Apple Valley rally and give Polk a 25-7 lead at the end of the third period.

“This was a good start to the season,” said Polk Middle head coach Michelle Fagan, returning to the Wolverine bench for the first time since the 2016-17 season. “We had unselfish play, a lot of assists.

“There’s still a lot to work on, but overall, it was a great team effort, especially since we’ve had to navigate so many obstacles.”

Polk Middle head coach Michelle Fagan returned to the Wolverine sideline after a three-year absence

Bradley and Gavionna Carson each had six points for Polk Middle, with Bailey Staton and Charley Dusenbury each scoring four. Kylie Lewis and Leah Dotson each scored three points and Jayden Duncan and Tali Thompson each added two.

“We’ve had practices where we don’t always have everyone and we’ve had to put in a lot in a short amount of time,” Fagan said. “I thought they did well given all of that.”

Polk Middle is scheduled to be back in action on Thursday, traveling to Hendersonville Middle.