Tag Archives: girls game stories

Genesis Bryant leads No. 1 Lovejoy past No. 8 Tucker in dominant fashion

Contributed by Rob Grubbs   (@RCGJr226070)

Sponsored by:   @sportalspace

January 23, 2018 (Lovejoy, GA): On paper, it appeared to be a great matchup, the Lovejoy Lady Wildcats (19-1, 10-1), ranked No. 1 in AAAAAA, against the No. 8 ranked Tucker Lady Tigers (14-6, 8-3) on Tuesday night, both from Region 4. Tucker had won seven of its last eight and played tough against the Class AAAAAAA No. 1 Westlake Lady Lions before Christmas and seemed poised to push Lovejoy for a chance at region supremacy. But as the game unfolded, it became apparent that while Tucker was a good team, Lovejoy was a great team.

Just as a fine-tuned sportscar has multiple components that work together in unison to provide maximum production, Head Coach Cedric King has built his team in a similar fashion. He has the power of a proven scorer in sophomore Genesis Bryant. Bryant is unique in that she can score at will, but she also brings her entire team for the ride.  They have the proven leadership of senior low post player Kayla Brown who can dominant the game in the paint and provide a defensive stopper.  Add to the mix sophomore Anaya Boyd who has the skills to run the court like a point guard, shoot from the outside and post up against anyone.  Top all of that off with a roster full of role-playing stars who fit the mold to perfection, and Lovejoy can play with anyone.

In the end, the Lady Wildcats completely dismantled the Lady Tigers for a convincing 68-33 win. With the regular season winding down, Coach King has his team steadily improving and ready to make a championship run. Even the reserves who got to play the final minutes for Lovejoy in relief seemed to have something to prove, they play with an edge.

The game started slowly for Lovejoy, they picked up two quick fouls and seemed to be a little hesitant early. The score was tied just passed the halfway point of the first quarter when the Lady Wildcats stepped on the throttle. Bryant and J’Auana Robinson both hit threes and when Mariah Spain drove the length of the floor after a steal for a layup to end the first quarter, they capped off a 12-1 run in just three minutes.

Bryant was brilliant throughout, she scored 14 points in the first half alone to extend the lead. As good as she was at creating scoring opportunities, Kayla Brown, the only senior on the roster,  was equally impressive down low,  she dominated the middle and imposed her will on the glass, gathering 11 rebounds. Tucker could not keep up with all the offensive fire power of the Wildcats.

The second quarter was an offensive clinic by Lovejoy, they scored on a perfect inbound pass from Robinson to Brown, a baseball pass from Bryant the entire length of the court to Brown for an easy layup and a deep three from Avanna Preston. Everything was working in the repertoire.

In the second half, Coach King substituted in waves, he seemed to have unlimited depth at his disposal. Eight of his players had points in the first half and two more joined the scorer’s sheet in the second half. Each player seemed to bring a specific skill set that complimented the team as a whole. After a three-point play by Bryant near the end of the third quarter, the Lady Wildcats had extended the lead to 58-20.  Lovejoy was solid from the charity stripe as well, hitting 22-of-33 free throws (67%).

For Tucker, the game got out of hand quickly and took them out of their game plan.  Senior guard Kierra Guthrie was able to dribble and penetrate, but the shots would not fall for the Lady Tigers and the constant pressure eventually wore them down.  Junior Jasani Buchanan continued to fight, she scored early in the third quarter off a steal and later scored on a nice drive to the basket. She led the Lady Tigers in scoring with 10 points.

Senior guard Kayla Baise would make two three-pointers in the fourth, hopefully giving Tucker something they can pull from the rubble to carry into the next game.

As bad as the final score, the Lady Tigers are still in third-place in Region 4-AAAAAA, only one game behind No. 7 Stephenson for second.  It is time to put this one behind them and finish strong in their final four games in the regular season, including their finale at home against the same Lovejoy team.

Afterwards, Coach King still saw room improvement, but was pleased overall. “Our girls competed and executed well, but we still need to improve our mental toughness. We tell them, don’t let anyone steal your joy while playing, which is important to getting better.”  He also cited the play of junior Preston as key, “Avanna played a big part of the win tonight, I was proud of her, but as a team, there are a lot of areas we can improve.” The thought of Lovejoy getting better and mentally tougher should cause a lot of concern for the rest of class AAAAAA and with their youth and good coaching, they will be good for a while.

Top Performers

Tucker
Jasani Buchanan – 10 points, 5 rebounds
Summer Dilwood – 6 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist
Kayla Blaise – 6 points

Lovejoy
Genesis Bryant – 23 points, 2 rebounds, 4 assists, 4 steals
Anna Boyd – 15 points, 7 rebounds
Kayla Brown – 5 points, 11 rebounds

Savannah Samuel stars with 23 of 29 River Ridge second half points to carry Lady Knights past Sequoyah, 54-48

River Ridge 54, Sequoyah 48

River Ridge moved into third-place in R6-AAAAAA

The War Lodge was host to an important Region 6-AAAAAA matchup between Sequoyah (16-5, 7-4) and the River Ridge Knights (15-5, 8-3). Deadlocked at 7-3 apiece in the standings, the winner would control third-place in the top-heavy region while No. 3 Harrison (16-4, 11-0) and No. 4 Creekview (13-6, 8-2) manned the top spots. The Lady Knights shook off a nightmarish opening four minutes to regain their composure and methodically chip away at an early deficit, eventually gaining control and closing out a 54-48 road win behind sophomore Savannah Samuel’s sensational night.

The Lady Chiefs jumped all over the Knights, forcing four quick turnovers and leading 8-0 at the 6:09 mark. Coach Jason Taylor laid into his players, exclaiming they were about to get ran out of the gym if they didn’t take better care of the ball. Another two minutes went by and things didn’t get much better, the Lady Chiefs up 14-4 as Sydney Rosant and AnnaLynne Bennett scored six apiece in the frame.

River Ridge would close on an 11-4 run to end the quarter down 18-15, Mary Allen Mansell sparking the Lady Knights with six early points and Samuel adding five.

The two teams traded buckets in the second quarter. Peyton Satterfield got hot with two threes for Sequoyah, but River Ridge’s size began to pose a problem as 6-foot-2 Lexi Palmer and 6-foot Faith Arthur scored four points apiece around the basket. Arthur added a contested jumper in the lane at the buzzer as the Knights entered the half trailing 28-25.

In the third quarter, Samuel took over. The 6-foot-1 wing led the charge as the Knights pounded the smaller Lady Chiefs on the boards. Samuel’s first six points of the quarter all came on put-backs as River Ridge finally got over the hump and seized their first lead of the game at 33-31 with 3:55 remaining.

At the end of three, River Ridge held a 37-36 advantage. Samuel scored 10 points in the quarter while Arthur crashed the glass alongside Samuel for second chance opportunities.

The Knights shut down senior leader Alyssa Cagle, who had only two points, both coming from the free throw line in the first quarter. With Cagle unable to find a field goal, the Lady Chiefs scrambled for baskets. Sequoyah trailed 41-40 before Samuel drilled a three in the corner to go up four with 3:33 left.

Samuel would finish with a game-high 30 points, scoring 23 of her team’s 29 second half points.

Macy Williams knocked down two free throws for the Chiefs to cut the lead to 46-44 with 2:18 to play, but Samuel continued to score at will, netting 13 points in the final frame, going 8-of-10 from the line.

Rosant floated in a tough bucket in the lane with 54 seconds remaining to make it a 50-48 game, but the Lady Chiefs were unable to keep the ball out of Samuel’s hands as she punished them from the line.

Sequoyah had a last gasp to make it a one possession game, but the Lady Knights got a crucial stop that resulted in a Leigh Codiniera rebound and two free throws at the other end with 13 seconds left to ice the game 54-48.

My Take

Cherokee County girls basketball just got that much more interesting. It would be too cliché to say a star was born, considering Savannah Samuel has averaged 20.9 points and 5.6 rebounds, but the 6-foot-1 sophomore transfer from Collins Hill has changed the outlook of an entire program. Gwinnett County’s loss is Cherokee County’s gain. Samuel was phenomenal, taking over the game against one the state’s best programs over the past four years. A lanky, fluid athlete that’s all arms and legs, Samuel can get to the hoop and finish through contact. She can stretch teams out to the three-point line and is a nuisance on the glass. She has a High Major D-I ceiling and could be one of the best players the county has seen in quite some time, a county with a rich tradition of girls basketball. River Ridge’s frontline did major damage against the Chiefs; Sequoyah’s one glaring weakness. While the entire roster took a backseat to Samuel in the second half, Faith Arthur and Lexi Palmer were relentless on the boards, taking Samuel’s lead. Arthur has a physical, sturdy frame that allows her to play inside and out. With three players standing over 6-foot, the Knights have the ability to dominate the paint. Freshman Leigh Codiniera showed promise and composure while handling the point guard duties. She went 4-of-4 from the line including the final two points of the game. Depth will be a major issue for the Knights come state tournament time. Outside of their starters, Sabrina Roberts and Emily Ruth combined for three rebounds and one steal; the only stats contributed by the bench.

Sequoyah looked like they were going to blitz the Lady Knights, coming out with intense defensive pressure, but eventually River Ridge settled in and the Lady Chiefs’ large lead evaporated by the end of the first quarter. Sydney Rosant came out firing. There’s not many shots the high-scoring junior won’t take. She was finding baskets early on and hit her season average with 13 points. The insertion of AnnaLynne Bennett into the starting lineup over tallest player, 5-foot-9 Emily Seres, paid early dividends. The engine that makes Sequoyah go, unsigned senior Alyssa Cagle, was held to two first quarter free throws. While she was unable to score, she affected the game in other ways, the 5-foot-6 bulldog leading the Lady Chiefs with eight rebounds, five assists and three steals. Her offense hasn’t been as consistent this year, but credit some of that to her deferring to Rosant. Sophomore Macy Williams had six points. She’s instant energy off the bench for Coach Derrick DeWitt. Williams is the next in a long line of tenacious Lady Chief guards. She is a major competitor on the floor.

Top Performers

River Ridge
Savannah Samuel – 30 points, 9 rebounds, 1 block
Faith Arthur – 8 points, 13 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 2 blocks
Lexi Palmer – 6 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, 4 steals, 2 blocks
Mary Allen Mansell – 6 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals
Leigh Codiniera – 4 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal

Sequoyah
Sydney Rosant – 13 points, 2 rebounds
Peyton Satterfield – 10 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals
Macy Williams – 6 points, 1 rebound, 2 steals
AnnaLynne Bennett – 6 points, 3 rebounds, 1 block
Colby Carden – 5 points, 2 rebounds, 2 steals
Alyssa Cagle – 2 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 steals

6A No. 2 Harrison controls tempo, but 7A No. 2 Collins Hill grinds out 42-39 win

Contributed by Rob Grubbs  (@RCGJr226070)

Sponsored by:   @sportalspace

7ANo. 2 Collins Hill 42, 6ANo. 2 Harrison 39

Harrison was able to neutralize Collins Hill’s size advantage for most of the game

FAYETTEVILLE, Ga. – In men’s basketball, most games are won with athleticism and skill, the tallest players and those that leap the highest usually determine the outcome.  But the ladies game has more room for diversity of style, it can be more of a tactical match of wits and the ability for the head coach to relate and motivate his team.  In the nightcap of the Queens of the Hardwood Classic, two of the best teams in the state faced off with completely different roster styles. The Harrison Lady Hoyas (7-2), who lost the state championship last season to Mays by one point, are currently ranked No. 2 in Class AAAAAA while Collins Hill (9-1) is ranked No. 2 in Class AAAAAAA. Harrison has a small quick line-up, they start four guards and a forward, while Collins Hill is exactly the opposite, they start four forwards and one guard. The game was a low scoring affair as the Lady Hoyas dictated the pace, but the Lady Eagles held on for the 42-39 win.

Collins Hill has All-State forward 6-foot-2 Jada Rice (NC State) and University of Georgia-commit 6-foot-3 Jayvn Nicholson and as Head Coach Brian Harmon said, “We prefer to work our offense inside and which opens up our outside shots.”

That is how the game started, Nicholson scored the first basket in the paint for Collins Hill to set the tone early. The Lady Hoyas prefer to run a motion offense with multiple passes and controlling the ball for long periods of time. Their typical possession contained up to 15 passes as they looked for the open shot, with the entire team working in orchestrated precision that resembles synchronized swimming in some instances. You could sense that the Lady Eagles’ height inside was affecting Harrison, as most of their shots had a much higher arch than normal and at the halfway mark of the first quarter, the Lady Hoyas still had not scored a point. Senior Harper Vick finally broke the ice with a three at 3:34 mark in opening quarter to tie the game at 3.

The change of pace from Harrison caused frustration for Collins Hill, with the Lady Hoyas controlling offensive possessions for long periods of time, they effectively took away what the Lady Eagles do best. The patience was paying off for Harrison as they jumped out to a 10-8 lead after the initial quarter.

With their post players effectively neutralized, Collins Hill showed that to be a champion you must adapt, and junior guard Bria Harmon (Purdue) took control of the Lady Eagle offense, hitting a runner early in the second quarter to tie the game up. Harmon, who is a Gwinnett Daily Post Super 6 pick (along with Nicholson) and Coach Harmon’s daughter, continued to look for scoring opportunities throughout the game.

Coach Harmon called upon junior Katherine Fourie off the bench to supplement the scoring and she came up big. She entered the game with the Lady Hoyas up 16-14 and scored six points in less than two minutes, including a three to push Collins Hill to a 22-16 halftime lead.

Coach Harmon said, “Katherine can provide instant offense for us, which we needed, I just had to figure the right moments to get her in there.”

When he put her in, she came through, as she led all scorers with 15 points, all of them clutch.

Harrison continued the game plan in the third but behind Harmon, the Lady Eagles were slowly growing the lead behind Harmon and with the clock clicking down in the third quarter, Lady Hoya senior guard Sarah Woghiren hit a three at the buzzer to turn a 9-point deficit into a more manageable 31-25 game entering the fourth.

After a Jaron Stallworth basket, the Lady Eagles were up 37-30 with 4 minutes remaining, but Harrison head coach Steve Lenahan, in his 10th season, saw his plan coming into focus as the Lady Hoyas scored six unanswered to pull within one point with two minutes left.

Harrison had two possessions to take the lead but could not convert on either one and then “instant offense” Fourie hit a three-pointer with 1:13 remaining that seemed to ice the game at 40-36.

The Lady Hoyas didn’t bring the word quit with them on the bus from Kennesaw and when Vick converted a free throw to complete a three-point play to bring the game to 40-39 with 37 seconds, they were just a turnover away from another chance to snatch a win. However, Collins Hill broke the press and Nicholson hit two free throws to ice the game for the 42-39 win.

Coach Harmon was frustrated but pleased with the outcome. He closed with, “We have to do a better job of forcing our tempo instead of just allowing ourselves to play our opponents game, that is the lesson that we learned tonight.”

He had a classroom-style chat with the team on the bench for about ten minutes before they headed home.  Hopefully, it is a lesson his team learned, as the head coach of their next opponent was in the building to observe and scout.

Great teams separate themselves from the good teams by the way they adjust, Collins Hill has the roster, it us up to them to learn from tonight and move forward.

Rob’s Takeaways

  1. Junior Bria Harmon is a three-year starter at point guard and usually has the take of setting up the post players down low, but tonight, she took on more scoring responsibility and kept the Lady Eagles in the game throughout. She played excellent defense, and has extremely quick hands and feet. Being the head coach’s daughter can bring its own set of challenges, but she saw the direction the game took and understood it was her responsibility to score.
  2. I was excited to see Jada Rice and Jayvn Nicholson work inside and was disappointed they were regulated to a spectator role for much of the time. They will need to adapt, as several coaches from other top high school programs were in attendance for the game and took notes on how to neutralize their presence.
  3. The Players of the Game, as determined by the teams’ head coaches were UAB-signee Audrey Jordan for Harrison and Bria Harmon for Collins Hill.
  4. Coach Harmon had excellent utilization of Katherine Fourie, he brought her into situation when the Lady Eagles needed points and she delivered.
  5. As the region slate heats up, Harrison needs to find a consistent scorer to depend on, will that be Harper Vick, Sarah Woghiren, Audrey Jordan? Who will take the shots with the game on the line?
  6. Does Collins Hill get maximum exposure from “instant offense” Katherine Fourie off the bench or would she be better suited for the starting five? Coach Harmon will have to continue playing his hunch here as the region and playoff games get more important down the road.
  7. Up next – for Harrison, they face Lambert on Thursday night at the Hawks-Naismith Classic. Collins Hill plays Buford in the same tournament.

Top Performers

Collins Hill
Katherine Fourie – 15 points, 4 assists, 2 steals
Bria Harmon – 14 points, 4 rebounds
Javyn Nicholson – 6 points, 8 rebounds
Jaron Stallworth – 5 points, 7 rebounds, 3 blocks

Harrison
Amara Newsom – 10 points, 2 rebounds
Audrey Jordan – 8 points, 7 rebounds
Harper Vick – 7 points, 3 assists

Explosive fourth quarter powers No. 2 Wesleyan past Fayette County at Queens of the Hardwood Classic

Contributed by Rob Grubbs  (@RCGJr226070)

Sponsored by:   @sportalspace

No. 2 Wesleyan 83, Fayette County 58

FAYETTEVILLE, Ga – In girls high school basketball, the holiday tournaments give teams the opportunity to play against competition from other classifications and parts of the state, it is a good gauge of where they are and what they need to work on before region games heat up in January.  The Fayette County Lady Tigers, who advanced to the Sweet 16 last year in Class AAAAA, have gotten off to a strong start and got the chance to face one of the most storied ladies’ programs in the state, the No. 2 Wesleyan Lady Wolves. Under the leadership of Head Coach Jan Azar, Wesleyan has won 12 state championships in the past 16 years.  The current edition is led by the talented senior duo of point guard Amaya Register who is signed to Old Dominion and Furman-signee Sutton West, but an otherwise young supporting cast. While the Lady Tigers (8-2) played Wesleyan even through the first quarter, emerging star sophomore AC Carter dominated on the offensive and defensive sides of the court and led the Lady Wolves (6-1) to an impressive 83-58 win.

The opening tip of the game gave a glimpse what was to transpire as West easily tipped the ball out to Carter who had an easy lay-up for the opening score. West would score on their next possession to go up 4-0 less than one minute in and a sudden feeling of a blow-out wafted overhead, but Lady Tiger senior forward Rikkelle Miller knocked down a three to answer, which seemed to settle her team down. Miller hit another three-pointer at the end of the first quarter to tie things up at 20. An otherwise impressive first quarter by the Lady Tigers did have one negative, the sharpshooting Miller picked up two quick fouls, the second one only three minutes into the game, it would significantly affect the way Fayette County Head Coach John Strickland rotated her in and out to protect her.

The Wolves struck quickly to start the second half, they went on a 9-0 run over the first 3 minutes. Register and Carter scored during the run that put the Lady Wolves up for good. The Lady Wolves may have stars, but their roster is strong from top to bottom and minutes are spread out.  When West sat down in the second quarter, Sophomore Izzy Larsen got productive time and scored off an offensive rebound and put back. Another sophomore, Lauren Hill, hit a three from the top of the key and Register followed suit. Fayette County senior guard Trinity Brown, who had the task of answering the Wesleyan press all game, kept the Lady Tigers within striking distance, she slashed to the basket on two occasions for lay-ups to keep her team close. At the half, the Lady Wolves were up 40-31.  After the 9-0 run to start the quarter, the Lady Tigers matched points the rest of the half.

The third started like the first, Carter hit a triple on the first play. It was the start of a surgically precise third quarter where the Lady Wolves operated at will. They hit six three-pointers in the quarter alone, Carter and Register with two each, and Nicole Azar and Hill also getting one. Maegan Barkley was a bright spot in the second half for the Lady Tigers, she made an athletic steal at mid-court and a drive for the basket plus the foul to keep Fayette County within reach at 58-45.

By the fourth quarter, the game was decided. It was an opportunity to showcase some skillsets and get some younger players some playing time. Carter impressed the crowd with a strong defensive rebound and then drove the length of the floor for the lay-up. She was almost unguardable throughout the game.  Miller would add one more three with 6 minutes remaining, but the Lady Wolves closed out strong for the 25-point win.

Coach Azar was proud of the effort afterwards, “We have not played in 11 days, so I was really impressed at our shooting, we shot the ball really well. And made shots on the offensive end allow us to set up the press. Fayette County is a good team, we just hit the shots that let us jump out to a big lead and put it away.”

The Lady Wolves are going to be sending a lot of good teams home with 25-point losses as the season progresses.

Rob’s Takeaways

  1. The Wesleyan Lady Wolves arrived at the gym 25 minutes prior to game time, they literally walked off their bus, put on tournament tee-shirts and started their warm-up routine.
  2. Senior Sutton West is a state championship machine, she currently has 7 (two in basketball, once in soccer and four in track). She has the chance to get four more this year. She is their best defender and usually draws the opponent’s best player. She can bring the ball up court, effectively maneuver the press and score off the dribble.
  3. The Lady Wolves offense runs through AC Carter, Amaya Register typically makes an entry pass to her at the free-throw line and she either drives to the hoop from a spin move, passes to a cutter headed to the basket, or back out to Register who resets the play.
  4. Early foul trouble on Fayette County’s Rikkelle Miller hurt the Lady Tiger game plan. Her ability to score from beyond the three-point line was paramount to keeping the Tigers in the game.
  5. Fayette County’s senior guard combo of Trinity Brown and Meagan Barkley have been in Coach Strickland’s system since freshman year and are athletic and physical.  Their play and leadership make them the favorite in Region 3-AAAAA.
  6. Wesleyan freshman Alyssa Phillip has been getting increased playing time in Coach Azar’s system. There is a lot of depth in front of her, but you can see her potential. Great size and physical around the basket.
  7. Coach Azar’s daughter, freshman Nicole is a three-point sharpshooter and another weapon off the bench for the Lady Wolves. She had two in the game.
  8. At one point during the game, Coach Azar and Register were having a strategy conversation during a Fayette County free throw about the technical aspects of the upcoming possession. The discussion sounded like a graduate level class lecture. The Wesleyan basketball IQ is off the charts.
  9. Fayette County has two post players that are getting their first significant playing time, sophomore Naomi Franco and junior Celine Akande. They have great potential to improve and give the guard-laden team more options as the season progresses.
  10. Regardless of what the PA announcer said – it’s Wesleyan – not Wesley-Anne.
  11. The Players of the Game, as determined by the teams’ head coaches were Maegan Barkley for Fayette County and Amaya Register for Wesleyan.
  12. Up next – for Wesleyan, they face Miller Grove on Tuesday at the War Eagle Classic @ Woodward Academy. Fayette County travels to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina for the Crescom Invitational.

Top Performers

Wesleyan
AC Carter – 27 points, 15 rebounds
Sutton West – 10 points, 10 rebounds
Amaya Register – 18 points, 6 assists

Fayette County
Maegan Barkley – 15 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists
Rikkelle Miller – 16 points, 4 rebounds
Trinity Brown – 10 points, 6 assists
Sydney Sims – 4 points, 3 rebounds, 6 assists

Fayette County Lady Tigers impress with cross-county win over Sandy Creek

Contributed by Rob Grubbs   (@RCGJr226070)
Photo by CD Photography (@FayetteSports)

Fayette County 58, Sandy Creek 32

Trinity Brown
Trinity Brown || CD Photography

FAYETTEVILLE, Georgia – Two teams that had impressive finishes to last years’ season faced off in an early inter-county rivalry game. The Sandy Creek Lady Patriots made it to the Class AAAA Final 4 where they would lose to eventual champion Columbus. Graduation was not kind to Coach Janie Hodges and the Lady Patriots as they lost their dynamic backcourt duo of ShanQuaylia Stanton and Kasey Toles from last year’s team. This year’s team will be focused more on a strong inside game from their star post players, Daija Powell and Paris Thompson.

Fayette County Coach John Strickland also lost a key player from last year’s Class AAAAA Sweet 16 team, Darryl Langford who is at the Naval Academy now, but brought back a deep roster with strong senior leadership. In contrast to Sandy Creek, the Lady Tigers bring experience to the backcourt but are young inside. The matchup was a classic opportunity for both teams to see where they are and what needs work. Since this is was a non-region game, one team was going to win while the other was going to learn more about themselves.

Sandy Creek jumped out to an 8-5 first quarter lead with all points scored by Powell.  The new guard tandem of Nina Lum and Jania Hodges were constantly feeding the ball down low, and Powell was moving in the paint with ease. As the game progressed, the Lady Tigers continued to rotate players, making wholesale changes at almost every break.  Guards Maegan Brantley, Sidney Sims and Trinity Brown were playing fast and they slowly turned the defensive pressure up which wore down the Patriots. After taking a 22-18 lead into the half, the Lady Tigers dominated the third quarter with their full court press and depth to pull away.

Afterwards, Strickland was proud his post players who were getting the first significant playing time of their career. “Naomi Franco and Celine Akande played outstanding against their inside players, who are really good. We know what we have in our frontcourt, we know what to expect from Maegan, Trinity and Sidney, but I was really encouraged with how Naomi and Celine played. If they continue to progress, that will open up more of our offense.”

Strickland also wanted to brag more on his ladies latest academic feats than the game, he said, “This has the potential to be a special group.”

In the end, it was Fayette County 58-32 with Brown and Barkley leading scorers with 15 each. Franco played a solid game in the post, just missing a double-double with 9 points and 9 rebounds. Powell led the Lady Patriots with 15; look for them to improve as the season goes along and their guard play gets more comfortable and confident.

Top Performers

Fayette County
Maegan Barkley – 15 points, 3 rebounds
Trinity Brown – 15 points, 3 rebounds
Naomi Franco – 9 points, 9 rebounds
Sidney Sims – 8 points, 9 rebounds

Sandy Creek
Daija Powell – 14 points, 8 rebounds
Paris Thompson – 10 points, 3 rebounds