Lady Rams, Lady Hounds claim wins at 7-A tourney

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 5, 2004

LIBERTY &045; It was perhaps no surprise that the WCCA Lady Rams moved on to defeat the Ben’s Ford Lady Eagles in the opening round of the MPSA District 7-A Tournament Tuesday night.

What was a surprise was that WCCA had to comeback from an early-fourth quarter deficit to defeat Ben’s Ford, a team that won only two games all season, 53-44 to advance to the semifinals.

&uot;The game was won at the free-throw line,&uot; Lady Rams head coach Sam Byrd said. &uot;They started fouling us and we made our free throws.&uot;

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The Lady Rams not only advanced to play the top-seeded Tensas Lady Chiefs at 7 p.m. Friday, but they also secured a berth in next week’s Class A South State Tournament.

&uot;Tensas’s a tough team,&uot; Byrd said. &uot;We’re going to have get some offensive boards to keep them from getting second and third shots. We’re also going to have to keep our turnovers down.&uot;

But it wasn’t as easy for WCCA (8-12) as it could have been or for that matter should have been. Erin Ashley led the Lady Rams with a game-high 23 points and Virginia Lewis had 14 points.

WCCA took a 12-7 lead after one quarter of play, but the performances of Katie Breland and Kallee Pittman got Ben’s Ford (2-13) back in the game.

Breland and Pittman scored 16 points each to lead the Lady Eagles, but got very little help from their teammates.

The Lady Eagles outscored the Lady Rams 17-9 in the second quarter to take a stunning 24-21 halftime lead.

WCCA cut the lead to one going into the fourth quarter, but was down by four early in that quarter before making a huge rally.

&uot;We called time out. We were down four with about six or seven minutes left,&uot; Byrd said. &uot;The girls turned up the press. They started picking off passes and making their shots.&uot;

No. 3 WCCA boys 67, No. 6 Huntington 37

The Rams (6-12) dominated this game from start to finish as they moved on to the semifinals and a matchup with the second-seeded Tensas Chiefs at 5:30 p.m. on Friday while ending the season for the Hounds (2-20).

Which will be no easy task considering Tensas’s only two losses in district play during the regular season were to top-seeded Trinity.

The Rams also clinched a berth in Class A South State.

Brad Pritchard had one of his best games of the season in leading WCCA with 23 points.

On the other side, however, no Huntington player scored in double figures, as the Hounds were led by Mike Ferguson’s nine points.

WCCA took a 16-9 lead at the end of the first quarter and then led 35-17 at halftime and never looked back.

No. 3 Huntington 40, No. 6 Amite School Center 27

If the Lady Hounds were perhaps looking ahead even a little bit to a showdown with Trinity in the semifinals, it didn’t look that way Tuesday night as they put the clamps on the host, yet visiting, Lady Rebels.

But now they can focus on their matchup with the second-seeded and cross-river rival Lady Saints as they meet at 4 p.m. Friday. The Lady Hounds also assured themselves a berth in Class A South State.

&uot;We hated to look ahead like that,&uot; Lady Hounds head coach Penny Moak said. &uot;But they wanted another shot at Trinity and to get to the finals. They still want to win district.&uot;

Jessi Moak led Huntington (15-12) with 13 points and Erin Hedrick nearly had a double-double as she finished with nine points and 11 rebounds.

&uot;Everybody contributed, which is what we need instead of one player trying to do everything,&uot; Moak said.

Amite (7-22) was in trouble from the start as the Lady Rebels trailed Huntington 12-2 after one quarter of play and never was able to get back in the game.

&uot;We started out aggressive with our full-court defense and they turned the ball over a lot,&uot; Moak said. &uot;Offensively, we were very patient.&uot;

Huntington led 16-6 at halftime and could have led by even more, especially after holding Amite to just one field goal the entire first half.

The Lady Hounds eventually put the game out of reach by outscoring the Lady Rebels 15-7 in the third quarter for a 31-13 lead.