Lowly Fairview bows to Bryant
EDITOR’S NOTE: Because the look back at each day in Bryant athletic history has been so favorably received during the time when there was no sports during the COVID-19 shutdown, BryantDaily.com will continue posting past stories of Bryant athletics either posted on BryantDaily.com (from 2009 to the present) or published in the Bryant Times (from 1998 to 2008).
By ROB PATRICK
CAMDEN — Fresh from a disappointing loss to the Pine Bluff Fillies that cost them a share of the AAAAA-South Conference championship, the Bryant Lady Hornets may have been due for a letdown when they traveled to Camden Fairview Friday night.
Of course, even if they had suffered such a thing, Fairview’s hapless Lady Cardinals, at 3-18 overall and 0-12 in league play, may not have been able to take enough advantage to actually win.
Unfortunately for Fairview, however, the Lady Hornets were sharp from the start. They rolled up the game’s first 18 points and outscored the Lady Cards 22-1 to begin the game on the way to an easy 57-24 win.
Bryant improved to 22-5 overall and 11-2 in league play with the victory. The Lady Hornets, bound for the Class AAAAA State Tournament in Fayetteville next week, were set to finish their regular season schedule at home Tuesday against the rival Benton Lady Panthers.
On Friday, the Lady Cardinals, celebrating senior night, struggled to get passes completed to each other at the start. Joanie Robideaux began the scoring for the Lady Hornets with a 3-pointer. Ashley Wallis followed up with a steal that led to a trip to the free-throw line for Kim Jacuzzi.
Her free throws made it 5-0 before Fairview had even attempted a shot.
Bekka Middleton’s short jumper continued the opening salvo. In limited playing time, Middleton led the Lady Hornets with 12 points in the game. Senior Emily Hantz finished with 10.
A steal and layup by Wallis (8 points) made it 9-0 just two minutes into the game.
Bryant backed off the pressure defense a bit at that point and went through a stretch of missed shots and turnovers that only ended when Wallis drove for a layup with 2:27 left in the quarter.
After another easy deuce for Wallis, Middleton swiped a pass and fed Hantz for a three-point play. Hantz then swiped the ball and drove for a layup that make it 18-0 with 1:03 left in the period.
By that time, Bryant head coach Carla Crowder had started subbing. By the middle of the second quarter, all of the available Lady Hornets had played. (Guards Lindsey Menard and Courtney Stone remain sidelined with injuries.)
Fairview finally broke the shutout with :11 left in the first quarter when Emily Moll hit a free throw.
Sophomore post player Ashley Fitz started the second-quarter scoring with an offensive-rebound basket and, when junior Shannon Amos hit a pair of free throws, Bryant led 22-1.
Fairview senior Vivian Washington then managed her team’s first field goal with a stickback at the 6:17 mark, nearly 10 minutes into the game.
Another basket by Washington and one by Tamara Green made it 22-7 before Amos knocked down a short jumper to get Bryant going again. Jacuzzi grabbed a teammate’s miss and scored to bump the margin back to 19 with 2:50 left in the half.
Bryant led 31-11 at the half.
It was 35-15 when the Lady Hornets put together another push. Jacuzzi, who finished with 8 points, scored off the offensive glass again then Robideaux made a steal and layup. Wallis swiped a pass and Hantz got an easy bucket off a relay from Robideaux then Middleton scored inside to make it 43-15.
The lead eventually reached 30 late in the third quarter when Middleton, Wallis and sophomore Candice Croy scored consecutive baskets to make it 49-19.
Fairview’s Shervernon Gill scored the first basket of the fourth quarter then the Lady Cards went the final 4:35 without a point as the Lady Hornets, behind Amos and Croy, increased the lead to the final, largest difference.
Both Amos and Croy finished with 6 points, Robideaux added 5 and Fitz 2.
Five different Fairview players had a team-high 4 points.