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Lady Cougars take tourney win

By By Jim Luke/The Meridian Star
Nov. 2, 2001
DECATUR The Lady Cougars of Newton County survived a pair of offensive runs by the Philadelphia Lady Tornadoes to escape with a 54-50 victory here Thursday night in the opening round of the Newton County Girls' Basketball Tournament. In the first game, Bay Springs used strong first and fourth quarters to down Northeast Lauderdale 67-59.
Newton County took an early 15-4 lead over Philadelphia before the Lady Tornadoes put together an 11-0 run to knot the game at 15-15 with 6:46 to play in the second quarter. The two teams traded baskets throughout the remainder of the first half to go to the locker rooms tied 27-27 at halftime.
The Lady Cougars used a pair of offense runs of their own, combined with solid defense, to build a lead that grew as high as 11 points midway through the fourth quarter at 52-41. Philadelphia began clawing back into the game but could not catch Newton County.
First-year Philadelphia coach Jason Gentry was also pleased with the effort of his team in their opening game of the season.
Newton County, 1-0, was led offensively by Yolaunda Johnson and Kristin Chaney with 15 points each and Kristen Headrick with 10. Shekara Young led the Lady Tornadoes, 0-1, with 18 points while Dominetrix Hunter added 12 and Erica Clemons 11.
Bay Springs 67, NE Lauderdale 59
The opening game of the tournament featured a very physical battle between the Lady Bulldogs of Bay Springs and the Northeast Lauderdale Lady Trojans, in a game that lasted almost two hours.
Bay Springs' Kristy Martin led all scorers with 33 points in the contest while Shaquita Bell led Northeast Lauderdale with 22 points. Brittanny Martin added 11 points for the Lady Bulldogs with Quin Jackson putting in 19 points for the Lady Trojans and Crystal Hopson adding 11.
Bay Springs, 2-0, led the contest 21-12 at the end of the first quarter before Northeast Lauderdale, 0-1, battled back to a 26-23 deficit at halftime and to trail 39-38 at the end of the third quarter. Bay Springs was able to pull away in the fourth quarter for the win.
Philadelphia and Northeast Lauderdale will face each other at 6 p.m. Saturday in a consolation game with host Newton County taking on Bay Springs in the championship game at 7:15.

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