Prep roundups: FCHS advances, JCHS falls

Published 12:01 am Tuesday, February 14, 2012

MEADVILLE — Toni Robinson led all scorers with 23 points and Kierra Sykes added 11 points as the Franklin County Lady Bulldogs defeated the Kemper County Lady Wildcats 67-44 Monday night in the first round of the MHSAA Class 3A South State Playoffs.

“Toni has a great shooting touch. She was able to get a real good look at the basket, especially in the second quarter,” Franklin County head coach Charles Moore said. “We were able to get a couple of turnovers. Kierra Collins and Briana Grayson handled the ball well against their press.”

The Region 7-3A champion Lady Bulldogs had a 13-5 lead over the Lady Wildcats in the first quarter, but the second quarter turned into an unexpected shootout. With Robinson scoring 12 of her points in that quarter, Franklin County managed to outscore Kemper County 23-21 to take a 36-26 halftime lead, but Moore wasn’t too pleased with his team’s defensive effort.

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“They got into sort of a run-and-gun. They got some easy looks. We had some bad rotations on defense,” Moore said.

Franklin County’s defense was more aggressive in the second half and that enabled the Lady Bulldogs to widen their lead and move on in the postseason.

With the win, Franklin County (23-4) advanced to the Class 3A South State Tournament, which will take place at Forest High School. Franklin County will take on the host Lady Bearcats Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

Newton 64, Jefferson County 38

FAYETTE — Shafony Blalock had a game-high 18 points and Tynika Bender scored 17 points as the Newton Lady Tigers rolled past the Jefferson County Lady Tigers Monday night in the first round of the MHSAA Class 3A South State Playoffs.

The first quarter was a clear indication of what was to come for both teams. While Newton was scoring at will, Jefferson County had a hard time getting shots to fall. When the quarter was over, the visiting Lady Tigers had a 21-6 lead.

And it didn’t get much better for Jefferson County, the Region 7-3A runner-up, in the second quarter as it scored just eight points to Newton’s 16 points to trail at halftime 37-14.

“We gave them too many easy baskets. We didn’t play our style of ball tonight,” Jefferson County head coach Flora McKnight said. “We didn’t rebound the ball. We didn’t play defense.”

Jefferson County was led by Keionne January with 11 points and Malikia Graves had nine points. The Lady Tigers finished with a record of 15-12.