By Will Johnson
SLOCUM – After defeating the Central Heights Lady Blue Devils earlier in the afternoon of Thursday, Nov.16, the Slocum Lady Mustangs took on the Coldspring-Oakhurst Lady Trojans in their nightcap of the Slocum High School Basketball Tournament.
The game was close throughout the first half, but a big third quarter – both offensively and defensively – from the Lady Mustangs put the game on ice as Slocum pulled away in the second half to win by a final score of 72-48.
The game started off with both teams struggling to put the ball in the basket. Eventually, the Lady Mustangs found their range and took a four point lead they would never relinquish. Jessi Ives scored seven points for Slocum while Briley Evers and Gina Lively both knocked down a three-pointer to give the Lady Mustangs a 13-9 lead after the first period of play.
The Lady Trojans were led by Jade Eldridge who scored six points in the first. Sydney McAuliffe scored two and Ro McKinney made one of two from the charity stripe to bring the quarter to a close.
The game remained tight until the last two minutes of the half as Slocum began to widen their lead. Taylor Clark dropped in five and Laney Lasiter added four points for the Lady Mustangs. Ives and Shelby Bowman chipped in three apiece, while both Lively and Jalyn Fletcher had two.
For Coldspring, Destiny Thompson had five and Eldridge added fo
ur to her total. Aaliyah Jordan had two and Brie Amszi made one of two from the line to make the score 32-21 – in favor of Slocum – at the end of the first half.
After the break, the Lady Mustangs caught fire from behind the arc. Ives had a trio of threes to go along with a two-pointer while Bowman added another pair of three-pointers. Lively and Jaiden Wickersham both chipped in two as Slocum opened up a 22 point lead by the end of the third.
While the Lady Mustangs were on-fire on the offensive end of the floor, they were just as hot on the defensive half of the court as they held the Lady Trojans to just 10 points in the quarter. McAuliffe knocked down a three while Thompson, Amszi and Bre Bookman all had two. Eldridge added a free throw to close out the quarter for Coldspring.
As the final quarter got underway, the Lady Trojans simply did not have enough firepower to hang with their hostesses. Slocum dropped another 19 points on Coldspring behind five from Bowman and Clark, four from Fletcher, a three ball from Evers and two more for Ives to close the game and give Slocum the win by a final score of 72-48.
In the final eight minutes, Bookman had six for the Lady Trojans and Eldridge had four. Thompson added a three while both Jordan and McAuliffe both had two.
For the game, the Lady Trojans were led by Jade Eldridge with 15 points. Destiny Thompson went for 10, Bre Bookman scored eight, Sydney McAuliffe added seven, Aaliyah Jordan netted four, Brie Amszi had three and Ro McKinney had one.
The Lady Mustangs were led by Jessi Ives with a game high 23 points. Shelby Bowman poured in 14 and Taylor Clark singed the twine for 10. Gina Lively had seven, Briley Evers and Jalyn Fletcher both had six, Laney Lasiter added four and Jaiden Wickersham rounded out the Slocum scoring with two.
After the game, Head Coach Dustin Bates commented on his team’s performance.
“I liked the tempo. The second thing I liked was the way we shared the ball. We moved it around well tonight. I also liked the confidence we shot the ball with,” he said.
The coach was asked about the scrappiness his team showed in going after loose balls.
“They take pride in that. We’ll say get dirty and that’s what that means – get down in the dirt and fight for it,” he added.
Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.