Lady Trojans avenge earlier loss with win over Davidson

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 9, 2004

FERRIDAY, La. &045; For three periods of play Tuesday, the temperature inside the Ferriday High gym mimicked the frigid weather outside the yellow door.

Suddenly, someone &045; unbeknownst to all gathered except the Lady Trojans, that is &045; cranked the thermostat up.

Ferriday scored the first five baskets of the final eight minutes to flip a 5-point deficit into a 5-point lead, 41-36, thanks in part to its trademark press and freshman Kim Warner finding her groove.

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The Lady Trojans never surrendered their lead, despite Davidson’s drawing within one, and exacted some revenge on the Lady Warriors, 47-41, for an earlier season loss.

&uot;Those were the holiday blues,&uot; Ferriday head coach Lisa Abron said of her team’s sluggish start. &uot;It’s like this every time. I hate it this time of year. We managed to pull it out with our press. It helped out a lot tonight.&uot;

Down 36-31 to start the fourth, the Lady Trojans got back-to-back baskets in a span of 27 seconds from Jameca Garrison and Warner to pull within a point, 36-35.

Warner, who finished with a game-high 21, took over with two straight jumpers and a layup off a steal forced by the fullcourt press, to hand Ferriday its first lead with 3:37 to play since the end of the first period.

Warner, who fought her range for most of the night, said Abron and her teammates got after her a little bit to remain poised and optimistic that her touch would return.

&uot;They could tell I had an attitude on the court,&uot; she said. &uot;Jameca came over and said, ‘Get back in the game. It’s not over with yet.’ (Abron) was telling me to take my attitude off my face. I couldn’t find my spot early and when I did, shots weren’t falling.&uot;

The 10-0 Ferriday run did not last long, as the Lady Warriors closed the gap to 41-40 on an Adrianne Jones layup with 2:40 remaining.

However, the press repeatedly drove Davidson into fits and turnovers. When the Lady Warriors had opportunities to slice into the lead at the charity stripe they came up empty.

&uot;We were able to handle the press well in the first half,&uot; Davidson head coach Sonya Singleton said. &uot;I had to regroup and that messed up my front court a little bit with our ball handling.&uot;

Singleton’s reason for shifting to plan-B had a lot to do with the unproductive scoring night post Kimberly Pollard had.

No Lady Warrior reached double figures, as LaKitha McTear led them with nine. Pollard, a valuable resource at 5-10 had only seven.

Davidson was able to stifle the Lady Trojans early by breaking the press, where Ferriday gets many of its points off mistakes, and then slowing down the tempo in the frontcourt.

&uot;(Singleton) knows we like to run and that was a good strategy on her part. It almost worked,&uot; Abron said. &uot;She’s a good, young coach.&uot;

Garrison finished with just 10 and, as Abron admitted, the sophomore guard was rattled throughout with the physical plays and some no-calls from the officiating crew.

Several times on typically guaranteed scoring chances, Garrison turned the ball over by losing the handle or shuffling her feet for a traveling violation.

&uot;We started to lose our composure. I told Jameca she had to hold it together,&uot; Abron said. &uot;I told her at halftime, ‘It starts with you. You have to get everybody back in order.’ We did a good job in the second half.&uot;

The Lady Warriors built a 10-5 lead halfway through the first after Jessica Wizner dropped in two to spark an Abron timeout in order to rally the troops.

It worked, as the Lady Trojans reeled off eight straight before McTear’s bucket with 27.1 seconds left.

&uot;(Pollard) couldn’t score tonight, and if she could have who knows what the score would be. She missed some clear opportunities,&uot; Singleton said.

Still, Davidson surged ahead in the second period to its biggest lead of the night after Garrison dribbled the ball off her foot without a defender heavily guarding her.

Lady Warrior Sally Guy picked up the loose ball and scored for a 28-21 advantage heading to the break.

&uot;We needed a game like that. We started to get on a little winning streak and were a little overconfident I think,&uot; Abron said. &uot;We need somebody to test us, and Davidson isn’t anybody to play around with.&uot;

Ferriday boys 55, Davidson 49

Up 12 after a LaKenyon Russ jumper, everything appeared to be cozier than Christmas morn’ for the Trojans with 5:27 left in the third.

However, the Warriors tried to play the role of scrooge by outscoring Ferriday 17-6 to end the period and draw within one heading into the fourth.

That’s when Ladrian Davis took things over. Davis scored 11 of his game-high 25, including four clutch free throws, in the final period to seal the win.

&uot;We got some clutch free throws that bailed us out,&uot; Trojans head coach James Davis said. &uot;I think the guys are getting the confidence they need for this stretch we’re about to get into.&uot;

Russ’ 3-pointer tied the game 47-all with 2:19 left before Davis hit his first pair from the stripe to reclaim the lead for Ferriday, 49-47.

On the ensuing play, Davis batted away a pass and hustled to save it. Russ was fouled and swished home both chances to give the Trojans a 51-47 lead with 97 seconds left.

Russ finished with 14 points.

&uot;(Davis and Russ) are not going to be able to do it every night,&uot; Davis said. &uot;We need some more to step up to the plate.&uot;