Lady Cats lose two games in Winnsboro's Hoopfest tournament

By BOBBY "BUTCH" BURNEY | News-Telegram Sports Editor

Dec. 2, 2007 - WINNSBORO - After an exhilarating, last-second win in the opening game of Winnsboro's Hoopfest Tournament on Thursday, the Sulphur Springs Lady Cats couldn't recapture the magic on Friday.

The Lady Cats lost twice on Friday, 44-28 to Class 5A Georgetown which advanced to the tournament championship against Winnsboro, and 42-30 to No. 14-ranked Rockwall Heath.

Sulphur Springs (6-4) will host its first home game in the renovated Wildcat Gym on Tuesday when Princeton, rated No. 4 in Class 3A, comes to town.

Georgetown 44, SSHS 28

The Lady Cats led 11-10 after one period, but never managed another double-digit scoring quarter against the Lady Eagles.

Georgetown took a 26-17 lead into halftime, after then outscored the Lady Cats by seven points over the final two periods.

SSHS senior Stephanie Conley led the team in scoring with six points, while senior guard Jessica Savage had five points, including a 3-pointer. Stefanie Pruitt also knocked down a 3-pointer.

Georgetown was paced by senior guard Kelsey Kniffin with 14 points, including a pair of shots from long range.

Georgetown went on to beat Liberty-Eylau in the semifinals to earn a spot in the championship game, set for 1 p.m. Saturday, against the host team.

Rockwall Heath 42, SSHS 30

For the second time this season, the Lady Cats met Heath in a tournament and came up on the short end of the scoreboard again.

Heath got 18 points and 10 rebounds from junior post Sequenna Thomas and an 11-point, 15-rebound effort from sophomore Shanae Lowrance to keep Sulphur Springs at bay.

The Lady Cats countered with 10 points and five boards from senior Starkeisha Wright and six points from Savage, who hit the Lady Cats' only two 3-pointers.

Heath built a 14-2 lead in the first period, with the Lady Cats' only goal coming off a short bank shot from junior Mackenzie Cross, who finished with two points, five steals and four assists. Then, Savage knocked down a 3-pointer with 10 seconds left in the quarter to bring the score to 14-5.

That started an 8-3 run by the Lady Cats that pulled them to within seven points. Wright had five of the team's eight points in the run. A jumper by Delandria Lewis cut the deficit to 24-19 with 80 seconds left in the half.

But, Health held the Lady Cats to just one field goal in the third period, that coming on a putback by Lewis, to extend the margin to 36-23. Lewis and Stevie Moore each added four points and four rebounds for Sulphur Springs, and Conley contributed 10 rebounds.

Junior Varsity

The JV Lady Cats lost their first game of the season to Winnsboro on Friday, but came back later that day to hand North Lamar a loss. That improved their record to 8-1.

In the 45-40 loss to Winnsboro, Ja Monica Hall scored a team-high 16 points, including three 3-pointers.

In the 36-25 victory over North Lamar, the Lady Cats never trailed, building as much as an 11-point lead.

Hall had 11 points, three rebounds and three assists, Melanie Hudson added eight points and nine boards and Chasity Hall contributed five points and four boards. Talea Reynolds added four points and four steals and Alyssa Burney had two points and two rebounds.

Freshmen

The SSHS ninth-graders improved their record to 3-5 and will be playing for the Spring Hill Tournament championship on Saturday after beating Texas High 22-20 on Friday night.

Frankeisha Hawkins led SSHS with 10 points and four rebounds, Tyesha Thomas added four points and four boards, Kyrie Ivery contributed two points, four rebounds and three steals, and Ariel Spataro scored two points. Caitlyn Nix had two points, four rebounds and two blocks.

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