Thursday, January 9, 2014
For a half it looked like the North Augusta High School girls basketball team was going to hand Cross Creek its second loss of the year. The Jackets led 23-19 going into the half over the Razorbacks.
Then it all unraveled in the second half, particularly the fourth quarter. The Jackets (5-9) scored only three points in the final frame and fell 57-33. Following the loss, head coach Crystal Cummings was left trying to find answers.
“We had good momentum, then in the second quarter I picked up a technical foul and I was pretty much benched the rest of the game,” she said. “I think that kind of spiraled over to the third quarter and we just stopped making shots. I think if I had some cash on me that maybe I could buy a bucket, but other than that, nothing went in. Every shot we took, and our most consistent shooter was zero for the half.”
The score book told the tale – Mallory Stone led the team in scoring with seven points. Ja’Lyn Sanders had six, and both of those came on 3-pointers and were the Jackets’ first points of the game. Sierra Sanders also had six points and no one else had more than four. By comparison the Razorbacks had two players in double digits and were led by Ashleigh Outler, who had 21.
“In the first half they were the same team we had a good lead on,” Cummings said. “Then we just stopped making shots. We need shots.”
Despite their record, the Jackets can quickly turn around their season and have a successful year. They will be off until Jan. 14, and that’s when region foe Lexington comes to town and will kick off the region slate of games.
“That’s the advantage of having the region after all of your non-region games,” Cummings said. “You learn a lot about yourself, your team and your teammates. We still have good momentum from the Christmas holidays. We lost by 20, but we still played a very good defensive game. We can carry that over into the next week of practice, buckle down and fine tune everything. We should be ready for the 14th.”
As far as preparation, Cummings said nothing will change with the 10 days between games. The team will continue to do things as they have since day one.
“We have a little bit more time and we don’t have to worry about off days,” she said. “It gives us an extra two days of practice. We’ll just hit it hard, and it gives them a little bit of a break for the wear and tear on their bodies.”
Scott Rodgers is the news editor at the North Augusta Star and has been with the paper since January 2013 after previously working at the Aiken Standard. Follow him on Twitter @NAStarRodgers.