RHS girls’ season ends at Area
By Brannon King for the FCT
The 2016-17 Russellville varsity girls’ basketball season came to an end Monday night with a 45-30 loss to Lawrence County in the opening game of the Class 5A, Area 16 tournament held at East Limestone.
The two teams played evenly in the first quarter, but the Lady Red Devils started to pull away in the second period by outscoring RHS 16-6. The Lady Golden Tigers were only outdone by two points in the third and by three in the final period. Lawrence County, led by former RHS Head Coach Brooke Long, scored all of their fourth quarter points from the free-throw line.
Russellville (6-21) was led in scoring by Kallie Allen’s 11 points. Autumn Logan scored eight points in the game and six in the first quarter. Madison Murray scored six points for RHS, while Treyvia Pruitt had four and Makayla Phifer had one point in the game.
As the season ends, it was the final game at RHS for their lone senior, Makayla Phifer. “She’s been a great leader for us with regards to the way she works and the effort that she brings to the table every night,” Russellville Head Coach Corey Thomaston said about Phifer. “These girls love her to death, and that says all you need to know about her and the impact she’s had on this program. They know that they can count on her and she can count on them, so I was extremely proud of her.”
The end of the season also marks the end of Thomaston’s first year as RHS head coach, and he knows that the experience gained by his young team will pay off in the future. “When we have the opportunity to look back on everything that we were able to accomplish this year, I think we are going to be able to take a lot of positives,” Thomaston said. “I was extremely proud of them. We fought through a lot of adversity this year.
“These are tough young ladies and they’re going to just continue to grow and develop together. I’m excited about what the future holds for Russellville. This is just the starting point for us,” Thomaston added.
Prior to the Area match-up, the girls wrapped regular season with a win and two losses.
Deshler 71, Russellville 15
The Lady Golden Tigers struggled on the basketball court against the No. 1-ranked in Class 4A and 26-0 on the season Deshler Tigers. Russellville only scored two points in the first half of the game and trailed 47-2 at halftime of the contest played at RHS Jan. 31.
Five RHS players scored in the game, with Krista Sikes having the highest point total with six. She was followed by Madison Murray (3), Makayla Phifer (2), Lexie Glass (2) and Autumn Logan (2).
Russellville 51, Sheffield 24
Russellville bounced back Feb. 2 with a dominating home win on Senior Night against the Bulldogs. RHS recognized the only senior on the squad, Makayla Phifer, after the game.
Russellville used a strong second quarter to pull away for good in the contest. The Lady Golden Tigers outscored SHS 18-4 in the period and took a 27-9 lead into the half. Good defense held Sheffield to only four points in the fourth quarter as RHS enjoyed a good win.
Madison Murray of Russellville led all scorers with 21 points. AJ Taylor (7), Kallie Allen (6), Pruitt (6), Logan (4), Jamie Hill (2), Glass (2), KK Harvey (2) and Phifer (1) all scored for RHS.
Haleyville 54, Russellville 23
It was Haleyville’s turn to celebrate Feb. 3 and the Lions finished off an undefeated home schedule with the win over Russellville. The game was originally scheduled to take place at RHS, but due to a weather cancellation earlier in the season of the two teams’ first matchup at Haleyville, the game was played at HHS.
The Lions led 30-11 at the half and held Russellville scoreless in the fourth quarter. Russellville was led in scoring by Allen with nine points. She was followed by Taylor (3), Logan (3), Murray (2), Hill (2), Phifer (2) and Pruitt (2).