Team overcomes slow start
By Kevin Eckleberry Sports Editor
The LaGrange Academy Lady Warriors were a bit slow out of the starting gate.
They only managed five points in the first quarter of Thursday’s game against Lafayette Christian School.
Despite that slow start, the Lady Warriors found themselves leading since the home-standing Lady Cougars only scored one point in the first quarter.
The Lady Warriors (4-9) picked up the pace in the second period with 17 points, and they went on to claim a 43-32 victory in a non-region game.
Caitlynn Croft did a lot of the offensive damage for the Lady Warriors with 16 points, and 13 of those points came in the first half.
Jana Maddox added eight points for LaGrange Academy.
Morgan Douglass led Lafayette Christian School with 16 points.
“They couldn’t score, and we were busy turning it over (in the first quarter),” LaGrange Academy coach Mike Petite said. “Then we got it going in the second quarter. We pushed the ball, and we were very effective getting out in transition with the ball.”
By the half, the Lady Warriors were on top 22-12, and they extended that lead to 34-20 through three periods.
The Lady Cougars got as close as 10 in the fourth quarter, but the Lady Warriors were able to keep them at bay.
Brandi Smalls made all four of her free-throw attempts in the fourth quarter, and the Lady Warriors were 10-of-14 from the line for the game.
The Lady Cougars, meanwhile, found their offensive footing as the game went along, but they were unable to overcome the slow start.
“(The shots) just wouldn’t fall,” Lafayette Christian coach Paula Johnson said. “They were shooting them, and they’d rim around, and come right back out. I told them to just keep on playing hard.”
Both teams will now return to the region portion of their schedules.
Today, LaGrange Academy will host Arlington, which has dominated the GISA in recent years and could be headed for another state title this season.
The Lady Warriors have five games remaining as they look to bolster their position heading into the GISA Region 4-AA tournament.
“We want to be playing our best basketball right now,” Petite said.
The Lady Cougars, meanwhile, have four games remaining as they look to improve on their 2-1 record in GISA Region 4-A.
The Lady Cougars know they’ll be going to the state tournament, no matter what happens the rest of the way.
There are only four teams in the region, and all four of them will make it to state.
Johnson said the goal for the team is to be playing its best when the region tournament rolls around.
“We’ll be playing well,” she said. “We’re confident.”
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