Thursday, December 7, 2006
Four advance to finals
By CLAUDE VINSON
Benton and Marshall teams were looking for spots in the championship games as Friday’s Bi-County Tournament action rolled around.
Lady Cardinals-Lady Lions
The Lady Cardinals of Potts Camp and the Lady Lions of H.W. Byers started things off on day two. The Lady Lions had received a “bye” in the opening round.
The arch rivals hit the hardwood in a scrambling matchup that showed just how committed the Lady Lions were. The Lady Lions made most of their first quarter shots count and ran to a lead of 22-9.
Both teams were still burning up the floor in the second quarter. The Lady Lions maintained the double-digit margin, getting yeoman service from Rachel Jones and Symone Gorman. They had doubled the score in the second quarter before Kenyotta Jenkins and Jasmine Harmon caught fire. Potts Camp trimmed the margin to 40-29 at intermission.
The Lady Cardinals cut the lead to single digits in the third but failed to match the Lady Lions’ speed. The difference ballooned beyond the Lady Cardinals’ reach in the fourth and they fell 62-40.
Jones and Gorman, who had 12 each in the contest, were joined by Marian Parker who posted a like amount.
Jenkins had 21 and Harmon had 10 for Potts Camp.
The next game was a battle between the Ashland Blue Devils and the Holly High Hawks. The Hawks, defending champs from the past two seasons, had also been granted a “bye” in round one.
The Hawks started fast but then were cut off from the basket by a formidable 2-3 defense. They conceded the first quarter to the Blue Devils at 11-10.
The Hawks came alive in the second quarter and went out front. At the half they were four points better at 25-21.
Timothy Oliver began cranking out treys in the third and helped the Hawks to an eight-point lead. They still had that difference when the third frame ended.
Head coach Naylond Hayes seemed to have picked the right combination in the fourth. The Hawks gained their biggest lead of 12 points midway through the final frame. The Blue Devils picked up nine points but it left them on the loser’s end of the 46-39 game.
Timothy Oliver and Daniel Burton posted 16 each for Holly High. For the opposition, Calvin Hampton had 22.
Lady Rebels-Lady Indians
The next game was the third matchup across divisions – the Lady Rebels of Hickory Flat versus the Lady Indians of Byhalia. The latter was the recipient of a “bye” on Thursday and the defending champs of 2005.
The Lady Indians took the first quarter 14-11. The second was almost a mirror of the first with the Lady Rebels having a slight scoring edge. Byhalia maintained a little majority which equated to a halftime score of 23-22.
Hickory Flat pushed the defending champs constantly.
The Lady Indians started their run towards the victor’s column in the fourth, moving out to a 10-point margin. The game turned into a real slugfest with the Lady Indians losing Lashonda Odum to foul trouble.
But the Lady Rebels also lost their playmaker, Laken Cook, who picked up her fifth foul midway through the final quarter.
The Lady Indians passed by Hickory Flat on their way to the championship round on Saturday. The final score was 53-46.
High scorers for the Lady Indians were Chasidy Kizer with 16, Roszetta Blackmon with 14 and LaShonda Odum 12.
Kortny Tucker had a game high 33 for the Lady Rebels.
The last game of the evening saw the Potts Camp Cardinals and the Byers Lions duke it out in front of a capacity crowd. It was clear that first year head coach Sylvester Kilgore Jr. and the Lions came prepared for this meeting.
They loped to a five-point lead in the first quarter, but had their hands full in the second, barely fending the Cardinals off to escape with a one-point margin at intermission at 29-28. Shawn Collins had tied the score at 24 all and Joshua Martin had given Potts Camp its first lead.
This one was turning into a real donnybrook. Although the Lions still led at the end of three by four points at 47-43, the Cardinals were not shrinking violets.
Things got raw in the fourth. The pace turned into a run and shoot. There were turnovers and poor shot selections but the score remained close. The coach of Potts Camp was “teched” by the officials and Martin fouled out.
Despite a 28-point effort by Jacobye Davis, the Lions went on to win 64-58.
Nicholas Tate threw in 19 for the Lions backed up by Justin Owens with 12.
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