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Ferriday girls make fourth quarter comeback, fall short to Tensas

Valisha Johnson, center and Daricka James of Tensas try to block Albaneisha Johnson of Ferriday in the second half of the girls basketball game Tuesday evening in Ferriday. (BRITTNEY LOHMILLER | THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT)
Valisha Johnson, center and Daricka James of Tensas try to block Albaneisha Johnson of Ferriday in the second half of the girls basketball game Tuesday evening in Ferriday. (BRITTNEY LOHMILLER | THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT)

Ferriday — Ferriday High School girls basketball coach Lisa Abron had to be pleased with the second half effort of her young Lady Trojans team.

A wild and scrappy start that put Ferriday and Tensas High School in the double bonus early in the second quarter, made for an interesting second half that saw the Lady Trojans outscore the Lady Panthers 36-30 before falling short 67-64.

Jada Griggs and Sha’Keria Kelly came up big for the Lady Trojans with 27 and 22 points, respectively. Kelly scored 15 of her 22 points in the second half as a major art of Ferriday’s come back efforts.

But the duo’s fire power wasn’t enough to match against Cheyenne South’s 25 points and quick defense, along with Daricka James’s 17 points for Tensas.

Abron said they worked extensively on containing James down in the post, but they struggled with the task.

“I knew we had to contain the big girl, and we practiced for so many days, but I guess our first game brought jitters,” she said.

The Lady Trojans had trouble generating much offense against Tensas’s full court pressure early on as they didn’t get their first field goal until the 1:50 mark on a three-pointer by Griggs to inch within three points making the score 11-8.

Ferriday scored 13 of their 26 first half points from free throws and Griggs scored 111 of her 27 points in the second quarter.

The Lady Trojans wouldn’t be that close again until the third quarter when they came out of the locker room reciprocating the type of full-court defensive pressure that Tensas was implementing.

Because of it, Ferriday was able to go on a 17-14 run in the third quarter to bring them within seven points.

The Lady Trojans brought their momentum into the final quarter when Griggs forced a turnover and was fouled, giving her two free throws.

Griggs was only to know down one to bring Ferriday within four with 4:30 remaining.

Abron said free throws really hurt them in the game as they hit just 17 of 37.

“We missed 20 free throws and we lost by three points, so you do the math,” Abron said. “That really hurt us, not being able to score at the line.”

D’Asia Mitchell brought the Lady Trojans as close as 58-56 when she grabbed her own rebound and put it back up at the 3:10 mark.

Tensas felt the pressure and called a time out as they tried to keep their composure for the reminder of the game.

The Lady Panthers showed maturity as they stretched their lead back to four on a clutch free throw by South with 18 seconds left to extend their lead 66-62.

From there, Ferriday wasn’t able to pull off the upset and take the win as they fell 67-64 at home.

Despite losing their season opener, Abron said they can fix their missed free throws and turnovers, but she saw many good things that can’t be taught in practice.

“Good teams have to find ways to win,” Abron said. “I was happy to see the fight in them.”

The Lady Trojans return to the court Friday against Vidalia High School at Vidalia.

 

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