Thursday, December 1, 2005

Marshall County rivalry
Byers, Byhalia split games

By BARRY BURLESON
Editor

A pair of Marshall County rivals closed out the pre-Thanksgiving portion of the basketball schedule, with the girls’ matchup proving to be the headliner.

The host H.W. Byers Lady Lions withstood a fourth quarter run by the Byhalia Lady Lions to pull out a 56-54 win on Tuesday, Nov. 22.

“It was one for the ages,” said Jason Thompson, head coach of the Lady Lions. “It was two county rivals competing well for bragging rights. I guess it gave families and friends something to talk about over the Thanksgiving holidays.”

Byers led 8-3 after one quarter, 22-13 at the halftime recess and 38-31 at the end of three.

Then coach Summer Pannell’s Lady Indians went on a 23-18 run in the fourth quarter and missed a last-second “three” that could have won the game.

“They put on a great effort in the fourth quarter,” Thompson said. “We finally figured out how to make a few defensive stops.”

Rachel Jones poured in 18 points to lead the winning team. Also scoring in double digits were Amelia Cunningham with 12, Marian Parker with 11 and Ashley Stevens with 10.

“My young players are figuring out what to do and when to do it,” Thompson said. “I think we will continue to play better.”

For Byhalia, Chasidy Kizer had 18 and Ashley Wilson 17.

The Lady Lions improved to 4-6, while the Lady Indians’ record went to 5-4.

Earlier in the year the Byhalia girls, playing at home, had beaten H.W. Byers 44-40.

In the boys’ matchup, the Indians used a strong first quarter to grab the momentum and then rolled to an 83-68 victory over the Lions.

Byhalia outscored Byers 19-6 in the first quarter. The rest of the game was basically even. Each team scored 24 points in the fourth quarter.

“We played good ball,” said Charles Gillespie, head coach of the Indians. “We tightened up on defense early on, and that made a difference.”

Three Byhalia players led the offense – Cordell Jefferson with 23 points, Adarryl Richmond with 15 and Demarius Moore with 13.

“Offensively, we’re shooting the ball pretty good,” Gillespie said, “but we’re missing too many free throws.”

For Byers, which dropped to 4-5 on the year, Marvin Rayford gunned in 19 points, and Terdarian Bryson added 14.

The Indians improved to 6-1, their lone loss being by three points to Wynne, Ark., in a game played at Blytheville, Ark., on November 19.

“When you miss 15 free throws and lose by three, that tells you something,” Gillespie said.

Byers vs. Coldwater

On Monday of last week, Nov. 21, Byers basketball teams visited Coldwater with the boys winning in a nail-biter, 48-47, and the girls losing 51-39.

Nick Tate led the Lions with 15.

Top scorer for the Lady Lions was Parker with 11.

Schedule

The Byhalia boys played in the New Madrid, Mo., Tournament Friday and Saturday, Nov. 25-26.

Both Byers teams visited New Albany on Tuesday, Nov. 29.

This Thursday-Saturday, Dec. 1-3, varsity teams from both schools play in the Bi-County Tournament at Northwest Community College in Senatobia.

The tournament includes four games Thursday, starting at 4 p.m., three games Friday, beginning at 5:30 p.m., and three games Saturday, starting at 5:30 p.m.


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