By Marco Clark, exclusive to the Times
The Lady Chiefs outlasted the Lady Trojans of Alexandria at home Tuesday night splitting the series to one win apiece.
After the game, Coach Nikki Jones said, “I’m extremely proud of our team. They persevered to pull out the win against a well coached team tonight, however, we must have better play down low in the post area. We need more rebounding on both ends of the court but especially on offense to help our offensive out put.” Seniors Teanna Payton and Bre Willams, along with standout Junti Franklin, set the tone in the early part of the first quarter going 8-12. This enabled Jones to make substitutions early and often keeping a fresh and rested player in the game.
After going up by 10 points, Trojans head coach Clay Russell called a timeout to slow down the Chief’s momentum. It worked to an extent. The Lady Trojans came within six points at the end of the first quarter, 14-8. The next quarter would be a disaster for the Lady Chiefs. They only scored five points. Many factors led to the misfortune including turnovers, bad shot selections and getting out rebounded.
The Lady Trojans took the lead, 22-19 at the half. The start of the second half was full of excitement because of the fierce play by both teams. Payton played her heart out. Willams and Franklin played well and kept pace with the Trojans after falling behind by four points with a minute left in the quarter. A Lady Trojans inbound pass was stolen by Natchitoches’s Abrionna Kennedy.
The steal gave the Lady Chiefs an opportunity to pull within two points before the end of the quarter. The Chief’s inbounded the ball to Caytreonna Brown who scored on a lay-up. The final quarter showed the fighting spirit of the Lady Chiefs as they imposed their will on the Lady Trojans, outscoring them 14-6 to win 49-46.
Franklin led scoring with 20 points and Payton and Williams added six each.