HAVERHILL — Although just 5-foot-10 and a freshman, Andover’s Alyssa Casey took it all in stride.
Casey was not only not intimidated by the thought of facing 6-foot-3 Whittier center Samnell Vonleh last night, she relished the opportunity.
“I practice against tall girls and I just played a game against a tall girl, so I didn’t let it bother me at all,” said Casey. “I just wanted to go with the flow.”
The flow actually went through Casey much of the evening as she scored a season-high 24 points and pulled down nine rebounds as the Division 1 Golden Warriors rolled to an easy 72-50 non-league victory over the Division 3 Wildcats.
“She (Casey) is the real deal,” said Andover coach E.J. Perry. “She gets better every day.”
Casey was 11 for 18 from the floor and even nailed a pair of 3-pointers. She was also the most effective in the first half when the Warriors took control of the game, leading 21-8 after the first quarter and 39-21 at halftime. Casey had 18 points by halftime and Jessica Witten had 14 of her 20 points at the intermission.
The Golden Warriors displayed some excellent passing, providing plenty of open looks and spurring nine 3-pointers, including four by Witten. Their defense forced 18 turnovers in the first half and 30 overall.
“We just have to relax and not be so nervous against these kinds of teams,” said Whittier coach Kevin Bradley. “I could see it in the locker room before the game that the girls were nervous and it showed.
“But the good thing is that we have Andover again and we’re going to learn from playing these good teams. We have North Andover next week and we’re also playing Brockton. It’s only going to help us.”
Andrea Terranova led Whittier with 14 points and Michaela Martin (12) and Kayla Riley (11) joined her in double figures. Vonleh, who got into foul trouble in the first half, finished with 7 points, 10 rebounds and 4 blocked shots.
In addition to turnover problems, the Wildcats struggled on the line, connecting on just 11 of 24 opportunities. The Warriors, by contrast, were 5 of 6.
Andover 72, Whittier 50
Andover (72): Cormier 2-0-5, Caveney 2-4-8, Grieco 0-0-0, Webber 0-0-0, Connors 0-0-0, Witten 8-0-20, Hartnett 0-0-0, Alois 1-1-4, Reming 2-0-5, Nastari 0-0-0, Stickney 1-0-2, Kone 2-0-4, Casey 11-0-24. Totals 29-5-72
Whittier (50): Terranova 5-3-14, Riley 4-2-11, Flores 0-1-1, Martin 4-1-12, Mariano 0-0-0, Guadalupe 0-0-0, Vonleh 3-1-7, Ortiz 1-3-5. Totals 17-11-50
3-pointers: A — Cormier, Witten 4, Alois, Reming, Casey 2; W — Terranova, Riley, Martin 3
Andover (11-4): 21 18 21 12 — 72
Whittier (10-3): 8 13 10 19 — 50