Thursday, November 18, 2010
Lady Lions off to 2-1 start
By BARRY BURLESON
H.W. Byers basketball teams tipped off their 2010-11 campaign Monday, Nov. 8, at home with a split versus Independence.
Coach Jason Thompson’s Lady Lions were in control from the opening tip.
They erupted for a 19-5 lead after one quarter and outscored Independence 26-15 in the second period. They coasted to a 76-36 win in the second half
Byers’ “Dandy Dozen” player, Kourtney Coleman, poured in 26 points in the 40-point victory. Alexis Hardaway and Richenda Crutcher followed with 17 and 11, respectively.
The Lions took the court under the leadership of a new head coach, Trey Lawrence.
His team led through three quarters before dropping a nail-biter, 79-78.
Byers led 16-12 after one quarter, 40-30 at halftime and 60-52 following three periods. But the visitors rallied to pull out the one-point victory.
Top point man for the Lions was Shantez Hearn with 21. Anthony Maben had 18 and Chris Echols 12. Hearn and Echols also grabbed eight rebounds each.
H.W. Byers teams also split with Ashland on the road Friday night – the girls winning 73-53 and the boys losing 76-58.
The Lady Lions rushed ahead 26-10 after one quarter and then coasted.
Top point producers were Kyra Gulledge with 19, Kourtney Coleman with 18 and Abria Gulledge with 14.
The Lions trailed by just seven at the half but Ashland went on a 17-5 run in the third quarter to put the game away.
Echols had 12 points for Byers. Mitchell Wilson grabbed six rebounds.
Then Saturday, the Class 1A Lady Lions suffered their first setback of the early season. They lost 49-48 in overtime to Class 3A Sumter County (Ala.) in the Newton Classic at East Central Community College.
Byers built an 18-7 advantage after one period but couldn’t hang on. Sumter County outscored the Lady Lions 23-17 in the fourth quarter. Byers’ A. Gulledge, an eighth grader, hit a three to send the game to OT.
Coach Thompson said his team experienced foul trouble and younger players stepped up in the close loss to a talented foe.
“I think this game helped them grow up some,” he said. “It was not all bad.”
K. Gulledge and Coleman had 19 and 17 points, respectively, for the Lady Lions.
The Lions (0-2) and the Lady Lions (2-1) hosted Byhalia Tuesday. They then welcome Holly Springs Friday night.
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