Stingy defense lifts Bryant White past Lady Trojans

The Bryant White Lady Hornets eighth grade team of Bryant Middle School shut out the Hot Springs Lady Trojans eighth graders through more than three quarters on Monday night, while getting everybody into the game.

It was 24-0 before, with 2:17 left in the game, Hot Springs managed a basket.

The Lady Hornets wound up winning 24-10.

Bryant White forced Hot Springs into 26 turnovers and allowed the Lady Trojans to take just 21 shots from the field.

Lauren Lain led the Lady Hornets with 5 points and six rebounds. Kylee Fleharty, Jayla Knight and Lyniyae Johnson each had 4 points. Kiniyah Horton hit a 3-pointer while Haya Winfield and Brooklyn Welch added 2 apiece. Winfield had a team-high seven boards.

“I thought they played real well,” said Bryant White coach Ben Perry of his players. “Defensively, we’re trying the mix it up, play a few different things. 

“I’ve asked the girls to bring the intensity every game, high intensity,” he added. “Whether you’re going the wrong place or not, you better be going fast and going hard. They’ve responded well. The last couple of games — even against North Little Rock, we did end up losing but I think it’s one of the better games we’ve played all year.

“It’s always nice to play a good, strong defensive game,” the coach said. “I saw some really good things offensively and defensively, that I hadn’t seen all year. I thought they played one heck of a game. To shut any team out, I don’t care who they are, up to the fourth quarter is pretty impressive.”

Lain’s 5 points were the first 5 of the game. Winfield came through with her bucket then Knight scored off an inbounds pass to make it 9-0 going into the second quarter.

Johnson had her two baskets in the second quarter. Welch scored to make it 15-0 before Horton’s 3 made it 18-0 at the half.

Hot Springs had a chance to break through at the free-throw line midway through the third quarter but missed both shots. Knight scored the only points of the period and the game went to the final period with the Lady Hornets leading 20-0.

Free throws then a basket from Kylee Fleharty pushed the margin to 24-0 in the early stages of the fourth quarter.

Bryant White has a rematch against North Little Rock at home on Thursday night, then head to Little Rock on Monday, Feb. 4, to close out the 2018-19 season.

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