A Wilson Times Co. publication · Serving Southern Nash County Since 1947

Ladybirds fall at home to Lady Warriors

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A Hunt High varsity girls basketball team not lacking in weapons displayed another on the road Friday night in breezing to a 57-27 victory against Southern Nash.

The win, coupled with Northern Nash’s 49-26 loss at home to Franklinton, pushed the Lady Warriors into sole possession of first place in the 3-A Big East Conference at 6-1. Hunt upped its overall record to 15-3.

Senior Shaniah Spells drew the starting nod from head coach Tiffany Parks and responded with a solid all-around performance of eight points, eight rebounds, effective defense and an excellent job of ball-handling and playmaking.

“My role was mainly defense, but I need to start shooting more,” Spells said.

Of her starting opportunity, Spells added: “Just go in and do what the coaches stress. “Our effort was good, more energetic. We take every team seriously.”

The Lady Warriors, with Spells draining a pair of 3-point shots and 5-10 junior Bria Griffith tossing in nine points, zipped to a 20-4 lead after one quarter.

The Ladybirds were left with just two chances to claim a conference win in falling to 0-8 in the Big East and 4-16 against all foes.

Griffith paced the Hunt scoring with a game-high 15 points. Senior Tatiana Smith netted nine points — all in the third quarter. Ariyana Carlton, a 6-foot freshman, supplied seven points and seven rebounds. Senior Tyra Rushing grabbed six rebounds.

Junior guard Tristian Foster led Southern Nash with 10 points.

Hunt wrecked the Ladybirds with full-court pressure the opening quarter.

“We got a lot of fastbreaks and converted pretty good,” Parks reviewed. “We were not getting to the basket like we wanted. We started doing a better job in the second quarter but, typical Hunt, we go out shooting 3’s.”

The Lady Warriors driving to the basket usually resulted in a Southern Nash foul. The Ladybirds committed 23 fouls, while Hunt was whistled for 17. At the foul line, the Lady Warriors sank 14-of-26 attempts, while Southern Nash went 6 for 18.

Hunt wound up with 15 turnovers and connected on 20-of-67 shots from the floor for 30-percent accuracy. But this was the type of game that even Hunt mistakes sometimes wound up in points for the Lady Warriors.

Both teams managed one field in the second quarter. Leading 30-9 at intermission, Hunt struck for six unanswered points the first minute of the second half. The Lady Warriors’ lead reached 49-17 on Smith’s 3-pointer and was its largest at 55-22 on junior Imani Sutton’s nonchalant bank shot.

“Really proud,” Parks said of Spells’ performance. “We have been trying to encourage her to get her game back. She’s a great player. A couple of junior colleges have expressed interest in her and we want her to show everybody what she can do.”