Thursday, January 4, 2007
Hawks split with 4A Rosa Fort
By CLAUDE VINSON
Some years ago, Holly High and Rosa Fort of Tunica were in the same 3A class and once played in the same division.
Now the Lions have moved to the 4A class and their class of play has improved remarkably.
The Lady Lions came into the Hawks’ arena Friday night with a 13-3 record. Their head coach, Derrick Dace, has taken them to the state playoffs for three consecutive years, last season losing in the finals.
The Lady Hawks knew they were in for a tough contest, having faced the Lady Lions back on December 5. However, the Hawks scored first on a long trey by Katrina Cowan and this gave them a little pep. But the Lady Lions soon introduced their new style of play and ran up a 15-9 lead in the first quarter.
They continued to show that state contender style in the second frame. The Lady Hawks were getting their share of good looks but were having difficulty in finishing. Rosa Fort finished the second with the score double at 32-16.
After the intermission, the post players were out-playing the Lady Hawks under the baskets, and to make matters worse, their perimeter shooters were showing great marksmanship. The long balls helped them to a 19-point gap after the end of three.
The Lady Hawks’ woes hung around in the final frame and they were hurt by cross court passes which were consistently picked off by Rosa Fort leapers. The Lady Hawks points were slow in materializing, while the Lady Lions kept a 20-point difference between the two. The final score was 62-43.
The Lady Lions, who moved to 14-3 were led by three ball wizard, Jacarra Fell. Her 25 points had six threes among the tally. Sheena Debose pitched in 13 and Kimberly Scott threw in eight.
Katia Isom and Ebony Taylor led the Hawks with 12 and 10, respectively.
Hawks avenge earlier loss to Rosa Fort Lions
The Rosa Fort teams had swept the Hawks during their earlier season visit to Tunica. And they were trying to make it clean for the season.
And it appeared that things were going their way when they ended the first quarter with a 15-8 mark. These Lions were very quick and agile. They ran the floor with ease. They used a sliding zone defense to counter the Hawks’ offensive moves.
Although the Hawks were being out-maneuvered, they kept a respectable distance. It was 25-16 at the half.
In the third they went tit for tat with the Lions. They were forcing Rosa Fort into errant passes. Cordell Jefferson was finding ways to constantly bang it inside. The Lions were not having an easy time trying to defend his stick backs. The Hawks inched closer at 34-26 at the end of three.
To say the pace became torrid in the fourth would almost be an understatement.
The Hawks trimmed it to six and they kept the pressure at 212 degrees. Justin LeSeuer stole two quick balls and turned them into points to bring the Hawks to within four and throw a scare into Rosa Fort.
Daniel Burton grabbed a timely rebound and stuck it back to make it a one-point game. This was the second time in as many games that the Hawks made a battle royal of it in the final two minutes.
Jefferson was fouled on a turnaround and gave the Hawks a 43-42 point advantage at the charity stripe. Then both teams exhausted all of their timeouts in the last 10 seconds.
The Lions tried desperately to erase the deficit but the one point held and the Hawks and coach Naylond Hayes had escaped with another too-close victory.
Jefferson and LeSeuer paced the Hawks with 16 and 10, respectively.
Doral Jackson was out front for the Lions with 14. Martrevious Sanders was next with 13 and Courtney Watson contributed nine.
The Lady Hawks (3-14) and Hawks (6-11) will appear next at home on Friday, Jan. 5, against district foe and Marshall County rival Byhalia. Next Tuesday, Jan. 9, the Holly High squads stay in district play when they host Senatobia.
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