Moving upcourt

Riverside High senior Jasmine Symns dribbles upcourt during a game earlier this season against Huntington. Symns recently surpassed the 1,000-point career scoring barrier.

A “very brutal” three-week stretch during the January portion of the schedule was difficult on the Riverside High girls basketball program.

During that time, the Warriors faced six of the state’s top 10 squads. “I was just glad to get through the month,” Riverside head coach Scott Garretson said.

Garretson says the 2019-20 season has “gone about the way I expected.” There were two or three games “we could have won.”

Coming into the campaign, “We had a little bit higher hopes with the addition of the Valley kids. I saw where we were going to be deeper.”

It doesn’t get much easier than the January period in coming weeks. Riverside was 5-10 heading into Wednesday’s road game at defending state champion Parkersburg, a MSAC foe.

In recent games, Riverside defeated Hurricane, 37-31, and Sherman, 60-45. The Hurricane victory snapped an eight-game losing streak. The Warriors followed that two-game win streak with a 49-33 setback to Princeton on Jan. 31.

During a home game last week, Riverside’s senior standout guard, Jasmine Symns, was recognized for surpassing the 1,000-point career scoring plateau in a road game earlier this season.

Symns has been “a top-notch kid” for the Warriors, Garretson said. In addition to her scoring exploits, she is not shy in distributing the ball. “She’s very willing to pass the ball and get (her teammates) in the game,” said Garretson. “I don’t know what we’d do without her.”

Two freshmen — Alanna McKenzie and Mallory Crowder — have provided a boost for the Warriors this winter, said Garretson.

McKenzie, who came in from Valley Middle, has “had her moments,” said Garretson. The post player is the team’s second-leading scorer at about 9.0 points per game, and she’s made “solid contributions. I like the future with her.”

Crowder, from East Bank Middle, has contributed, as well, and is “going to be an eventual scorer for us.”

Riverside will close this week with a special night Friday when the Capital Cougars invade Quincy for a 7:30 p.m. matchup.

Garretson said middle school girls teams from East Bank, DuPont, Cedar Grove and Valley have been invited to attend and be recognized that night. They will also get a chance to mingle with the Warrior players and coaches.

Looking ahead, the Warriors entertain Oak Hill at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 10.

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