Lady Bulldogs lose narrowly in tournament consolation game
The Quitman Lady Bulldogs emerged from the Hawkins Holiday Hoops Tourney with a mixed bag of results. A disappointing loss on opening day to Cumberland Academy was redeemed in part by a second day win against Trinity and placed the Lady Bulldogs in the consolation game of the eight-team tournament. Quitman fell to the Tyler Heat 29-28 in the consolation game.
The tournament started well for the Lady Bulldogs. Madyson Pence opened the scoring against Cumberland with a nice 3-pointer, and the Lady Bulldogs opened an 11-7 lead at the quarter break. Maddy Whitehurst continued to provide most of the Quitman offense.
As the game unfolded, play at both ends of the court became disjointed. Neither team could maintain a positive flow. Although neither team executed a true press, Cumberland did pressure the ball and created turnovers. At the break Quitman held a 26-18 lead.
In the third quarter, Cumberland was able to take advantage of a multitude of Quitman errors. The Lady Knights took a one-point lead into the final stanza. The last eight minutes of play featured intense ball pressure by Cumberland point guard Rachael Decampos and excellent court awareness by guard Libby Allen.
Quitman could not string enough positive plays together down the stretch to win and was outscored 9-3 in the final two minutes and fell 46-42. Disappointment was clearly evident on the faces of the Lady Bulldogs.
A rebound victory over Trinity propelled the Lady Bulldogs into the consolation game Saturday morning against the Tyler Heat. Against Trinity, Quitman dominated the boards with a 30-17 rebounding advantage.
Quitman led 33-9 at the half, 49-16 after three quarters and coasted to a 61-23 victory. Quitman had three players hit in double figures with Ava Burroughs scoring 16, Maddy Whitehurst 15 and Lindsay Hornaday 13. Burroughs also added nine rebounds in the win.
The Lady Bulldogs fell behind early in the consolation game. Both sides settled into tight zone defenses and scoring opportunities were tough to come by.
Whitehurst powered the Quitman scoring. Her aggressive drives down the lane and on the baseline kept the game close throughout. Hornaday and Carley Spears seemed to provide a spark to the Lady Bulldogs, but in the end it was a more aggressive Tyler side which took the consolation prize.
There will be much to learn from the tourney for Coach Blake Hamrick and his charges. On the positive side of the ledger, more Lady Bulldogs are stepping up to contribute effectively throughout each game. Sophomore Reiny Luman, among others, provided quality minutes of play.
Quitman continues district action at Grand Saline this Friday.