Lady Vikings lose first place spot in district, Vikings stay undefeated

Published 12:25 pm Thursday, February 1, 2024

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OAK GROVE, La. — First place in LHSAA District 2-2A was on the line last Tuesday night when the Oak Grove High School Lady Tigers played host to the Vidalia High School Lady Vikings.

The problem was one team came ready to play in the first half and the other one did not. The one that did was Oak Grove and the one that did not was Vidalia, and that did not set well with Lady Vikings head coach Flora McKnight.

Led by Caroline Bradley and Ashley Johnson, Oak Grove jumped out to a huge lead in the first half and never looked back as the Lady Tigers cruised to a 65-42 win over the Lady Vikings to take sole possession of first place in District 2-2A.

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The Lady Tigers took advantage of a Lady Vikings team that McKnight said simply came out sluggish and slow right from the opening tip. By the time the first quarter was over, Oak Grove led Vidalia 25-4. And while the Lady Vikings did play better offensively in the second quarter, they were still outscored by the Lady Tigers 21-11 to go into halftime down 46-15.

“How we started the game (was the difference in the outcome). Our mindset. When you play, you have to be ready to play from the start. Their defense was good, but our mindset wasn’t there,” McKnight said. “It was more us than what they did. Not taking anything away from Oak Grove. They’re a good team. When you get the other team’s scorers to score that don’t score, you don’t have a good mindset.”

Bradley led Oak Grove with 15 points and Johnson added 11 points. Vidalia was led by Makenzie Watson with a game-high 17 points and Lyric Warner with 15 points.

The Lady Vikings played with a much better effort in the second half even though the game was pretty much out of reach. They outscored the Lady Tigers 12-7 in the third quarter and 15-12 in the fourth quarter.

“We played the third and fourth quarters way better than we did the first half. But you have to start well. When you’re on the road, it makes it difficult,” McKnight said. “I liked the effort they had in the second half. I’m not going to give up on my team. They came out of the locker room with their heads up.”

The Lady Vikings fell to 15-7 overall and 3-1 in district play. They play host to Mangham High School in a key district game for both teams at 6 p.m. Friday.

“Whoever wins is second (in District 2-2A). But we’ll be prepared. We’re going to be okay,” McKnight said.

In the varsity boys’ game, the Vidalia Vikings rolled to a 64-44 win over the Oak Grove Tigers to stay in first place in the District 2-2A standings. No other information on the game was available.

The Vikings improved to 15-12 overall and 4-0 in district play. They host Mangham High School in district action at 7:30 p.m. Friday.