Lady Knights squeak out win

By By Rocky Higginbotham / special to The Star
Nov. 12, 2003
COLLINSVILLE Most folks agree that the success of the 2003-04 edition of the West Lauderdale girls hinges on how the two returning starters shoulder the scoring load.
So far, so good.
Shannon Lloyd and Cierra Jennings were both in double figures, as was Vankeila Wilson here Thursday night, as the Lady Knights remained unbeaten for the young season with a 62-55 win over Kemper County.
Kemper won the boys' game 71-62.
West Lauderdale is slated to see its next action today in the Lauderdale County Tournament, while Kemper plays again Friday at home against East Oktibbeha.
W. Lauderdale (girls) 62
Kemper Cty 55
The defending Class 3A state runner ups moved to 3-0 for the year behind solid performances from Lloyd, Jennings and Wilson.
Despite a little foul trouble, Lloyd had 21 points and 11 rebounds, and Wilson scored 16 points and Jennings added 11 points, eight rebounds and five assists to help West overcome 21 turnovers.
Kaiha Fitch chipped in six points and nine rebounds for the Lady Knights, who had a 45-37 edge on the glass.
The Lady Knights started the game with an 8-0 run, but Kemper County got a 3-pointer from freshman Almetra Hicks to end the first quarter, then the Lady Wildcats got the first three buckets of the second quarter to go up 15-14. It was the last time they led.
West answered with a 9-0 run to go up 23-15, and Kemper never got the margin closer than three points again.
The Lady Wildcats dropped to 1-1 despite 14 points from Hicks and 12 points, seven steals and five assists from Erika White. Vilenna Collins had eight points and seven rebounds and Melody Nave scored eight points before fouling out.
Kemper Cty (boys) 71
W. Lauderdale 62
In a seesaw boys' affair, the Wildcats moved to 2-0 for the year by forcing West into 24 turnovers.
Kemper trailed by as much as 17-10 in the first quarter, only to pull within 17-16 when Shardricus Thompson's one-handed bank shot counted at the buzzer.
The Wildcats were up 34-31 at halftime and 54-47 going into the fourth quarter.
West got as close as 61-57 on a bucket by Rayshun Hopson with 4:08 remaining in the game, but Kemper scored the next six points. William Dale's basket off a nice feed from Thompson made it 67-57 with 2:48 left, and Andrew Harrington's putback with 59 seconds left was the nail in the coffin.
Rodricus Hopson scored a game-high 22 points and had seven steals. Thompson had 17 points, nine rebounds and four steals, and Dale had 17 points, eight rebounds and five assists. Colby Wren scored just six points but had 14 rebounds, nine steals and four assists, and Thompson had five assists and Hopson four.
Lee Nelson led a balanced attack for West Lauderdale with 15 points. Chris Seaphus tallied 14 points, Daniel Huggins scored 10 and Mark Ford nine for the Knights, who are 1-2.