Thursday, February 24, 2011
Byhalia finishes in north half final four
By BARRY BURLESON
The Byhalia Lady Indians gave Pontotoc all it could handle on the Lady Warriors’ home court Friday night in the Class 4A North State semi-finals.
Renee Crenshaw, in her first season as coach of the Byhalia girls, saw her team build a seven-point lead in the third quarter and let it slip away. They lost 59-51 and ended the season a victory short of the state tournament, with a 22-7 record.
The Lady Indians led 20-16 at the half. But the Lady Warriors outscored the visitors 43-31 in the second half.
One night earlier in north half play at Pontotoc, the Lady Indians led Houston by as many as 17 points in the first half, but couldn’t slam the door on the Lady Hilltoppers.
Byhalia, thanks to Jasmine Humphrey’s defensive rebound on one end and two free throws on the other with seven seconds left, escaped with a 68-65 win.
The Lady Indians never trailed.
They were up 15-10 after one quarter. In the second period, they ran the fast break time and time again to perfection. Megan Rayford scored on a pass from Latara Jones to build a 34-17 lead with 2:10 to go in the first half.
Erica Bougard fired in a couple of threes early in the second half to help Byhalia maintain its big lead. It was 52-40 after that quarter.
The Lady Hilltoppers did not die. With 2:56 left, they had sliced their deficit to three and two minutes later they were down just one.
Houston had a couple of shots to win it in the last 15 seconds, before Humphrey’s huge rebound and charity shots.
Bougard and Crystal Rayford had 19 each for the Lady Indians. Megan Rayford had 14.
The Lady Indians moved to the North State quarter-finals versus Houston with a 67-59 home win over Tishomingo County Tuesday, Feb. 15.
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