Lady Wildcats no match for 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 continueposting 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
Though the quickness, aggressiveness and daring of the El Dorado Lady Wildcats’ break-neck defense made it a bit of a helter-skelter game, the Bryant Lady Hornets would not be deterred when the two teams met at the Bryant Gym on Friday, Jan. 11.
Focused for battle after having a week to work following their first AAAAA-South Conference loss to Sheridan, the Lady Hornets repeatedly burned the over-aggressive Lady Wildcats on the way to a 63-40 victory that was only that close because of a game-ending 14-3 run by the visitors.
Though the Lady Hornets continued to have a penchant for turning the ball over, they clobbered the Lady Cats on the boards to even things out in that regard.
Bree Mann after being shackled by fouls and scoring just 9 points against Sheridan, dropped 19 on El Dorado in about three quarters of play. Jennifer Slack added 13 and Jeanne Randall 9.
The Lady Hornets also got encouraging contributions from juniors Starr Crow (6 points) and Haley Stobaugh (7 points). And junior point guard Rachel Blakley showed signs that she might have busted out of her shooting slump. Almost reluctant to shoot at times this season, Blakley, a defensive standout, popped a pair of mid-range jumpers in the first half that appeared to bolster her confidence.
The Lady Hornets scored the game’s first 10 points capped by Blakley’s 12-foot jumper and a three-point play by Slack on a drive to the hoop.
El Dorado’s Mydeana Baker interrupted with a 3-pointer but Slack answered with another driving layup. Mann banked one in from 10 feet out then added a free throw to make it 15-3.
A layup by Ro Aaron, who led El Dorado with 12 points, created but a pause in the Bryant onslaught. Stobaugh ripped a baseline jumper and, after El Dorado’s LaTasha Taylor missed a pair of free throws, Mann fed Yousra Elhagemoussa for a layup. A buzzer-beating layup by Slack made it 21-5.
The lead was never less than double digits the rest of the game.
The margin was still 16 going into the final 2:30 of the half. Slack went to the line with a one-and-one with 2:04 to go. She missed the first shot but Randall quickly claimed the carom and scored. Moments later, Slack whipped a feed to Mann for what turned into a three-point play and Bryant led by 20, 34-14, for the first time.
To top that, Randall followed suit with another three-point play to make it 37-14.
The Lady Hornets closed out the third quarter in a similar fashion in the starters’ final minutes. Leading 41-20, Mann scored 6 points in an 11-0 run that also featured a three-point play by Elhagemoussa. Lindsey Stone contributed a steal that led to one of Mann’s hoops.
It was 52-20 going into the fourth quarter.
Aaron and Brittani Nation scored the first two buckets of the fourth quarter but a three-point play by Crow got the Lady Hornets back on track. Bryant’s largest lead was 60-26 when Crow and Stobaugh went 4-for-4 at the line on consecutive trips midway through the final period.