Depth and defense have carried North-west Whitfield High School’s girls basketball team on many nights this season.
On Friday at Heritage-Catoosa, the two D’s took the Lady Bruins one step closer to the Sub-region 7B-4A title and a No. 1 seed for next month’s Region 7-4A tournament.
Macy Weeks led the way with 10 points, but a strong effort on defense throughout the lineup was the biggest factor as Northwest won 42-32 in Ringgold.
The Lady Bruins (17-3) remained undefeated six games into the sub-region schedule, with contests against Dalton, Heritage, Ridgeland and Southeast Whitfield remaining. Heritage (16-4, 4-2) is the only other team in the sub-region with fewer than three league losses.
“We jumped out and got a pretty good lead there in the first half,” said Lady Bruins coach Greg Brown, whose team was ahead 24-12 at halftime.
“They came out in the second half and made a little bit of a run at us, but overall our defense was very good tonight ... I thought by far that our defense was the difference in the game.
“I was pleased with how we stuck with our game plan and did what we needed to do to get stops. Sometimes that’s the difference in a tight ballgame, and we did what we needed to do down the stretch.”
Peyton Maret tallied eight points and as many rebounds, while Halle Ford had a team-best six assists and Bria Clemmons led the Lady Bruins with five steals.
Brown said the Lady Bruins did a good job of taking away Heritage’s strengths — a task no doubt made easier by Northwest’s deep roster.
“I thought our depth was the issue again tonight,” Brown said. “We were able to play about 10 different kids and they filled their roles. I don’t have a whole lot of complaints.”
• Northwest boys 69, Heritage 57 (OT): Northwest overcame a nine-point deficit in the final three minutes of the game and then held Heritage scoreless in overtime to take the win.
Caleb Storey hit a 3-pointer to tie the game with 10 seconds remaining to send the game to overtime, hitting one of his five 3-pointers on the night. Northwest scored an easy bucket off of the tip in overtime and rolled to the victory from there.
“We defintely had the momentum at the end of regulation, and when we tied it up and sent it to overtime, that took a lot out of Heritage,” Northwest coach Ryan Richards said. “The tipoff of the overtime landed right in our hands for a layup and that shot a load of energy into us and kept it going.”
Storey, who finished with 21 points, was one of four double-digit scorers for Northwest (10-10, 4-2 Sub-region 7B-4A). Andy Whisenant added 13, while Caleb Branson and Landon Cable scored 11 and 10 points, respectively.
• Dalton girls 61, Ridgeland 56: The Lady Catamounts (8-10, 2-4 Sub-region 7B-4A) lost a 15-point lead but held host Ridgeland scoreless in the final minute and a half of the game to earn their second straight sub-region victory.
Dalton never trailed after taking an 18-11 lead at the end of the first quarter, but the Lady Panthers tied the game 54-54 and then again at 56-56. Anna Kate Sisson and Bowen Land made key free throws in the waning seconds to secure the win.
Hannah Cox had a game-high 25 points, while Sarah Hartshorn added 11.
• Dalton boys 104, Ridgeland 91: Five players scored in double figures and the Catamounts needed all of them.
Dalton (13-5, 5-1 Sub-region 7B-4A) led by as many as 23 midway the second quarter but could never put the Panthers away in a game that turned into a marathon. Tristen Darville came off of the bench to score 18 points — 14 in the first half — and spark the Cats.
“That is what it takes to win, having people surprise you every now and then,” Dalton coach Mike Duffie said. “Every night you get a person doing something good, it gives us depth. They had no answer for Darville in the first half.”
Chris Childs led the Cats with 25 points, while Emier Bowman finished with 19 points and nine rebounds. Braxton Thomas had 17 points and eight assists, while Lyle Durham finished with 13 after getting into early foul trouble.
• Southeast girls 56, LaFayette 45: Maddie Pearson poured in 23 points for the Lady Raiders (13-7, 3-3 Sub-region 7B-4A), who led at each of the quarter breaks on their way to the league win at home.
Cricket Wyatt chipped in nine points and Wendy Perez grabbed 15 rebounds for Southeast, who were up 13-8 at the end of the first period, 21-19 at halftime and 36-31 entering the fourth quarter.
• LaFayette boys 64, Southeast Whitfield 59: The Raiders made a charge in the second half but could never overcome the Rambler’s 13-point halftime lead.
Ty Pendley had 28 points to lead all scorers for Southeast (5-15, 2-4 Sub-region 7B-4A), and Noah Ramsey added nine.
• Calhoun girls 51, Murray County 29: A slow start in which the host Lady Indians scored just 13 points in the first half didn’t get any better as Murray County (7-14, 4-7 Region 7-2A) struggled from the field.
No Lady Indian reached double-digit scoring, with Caitlyn Sims leading the team with eight points.
• Calhoun boys 74, Murray County 44: Calhoun busted open a close game with a run over the end of the first quarter and into the second for a Region 7-2A victory.
For Murray County (2-18, 2-10), 10 different players scored. Nick Stiles and Cesar Romero each had nine points.
• Mount Zion-Carroll girls 51, Christian Heritage 46: The Lady Lions managed just four points in the fourth quarter and lost at home despite having a pair of opportunities to tie the score in the final 21 seconds of the game.
Sarah Massengale scored 21 points to lead Christian Heritage (3-18, 1-7 Sub-region 6A-A), while Drew Tipton added 11.
• Mount Zion-Carroll boys 53, Christian Heritage 51: After the Lions put together a furious fourth-quarter comeback to erase a 13-point deficit, Mount Zion’s Chris Blanchard hit both ends of a 1-and-1 with 2.7 seconds remaining in a Sub-region 6A-A contest.
Cameron Locke had a game-high 23 points to lead the Lions (9-12, 2-6), but Mount Zion’s inside duo of Christian Corn and Cohen Pannell combined for 27.
• Murray County 50, North Murray 27: Murray County wrestlers piled up big points with pins to top their intracounty rivals in competition at Gladden Middle School.
Winning by fall for the Indians (8-6) were Anibal Raymundo (106), Austin McCall (120), Daniel Dayton (126), Tielor Johnson (145), Blaine Thornbury (160) and Dustin Gibson (182). Domingo Bautista (113) and Clay Thornbury (195) won by major decision, while Seth Gilbert (220) accepted a forfeit.
North Murray did not report individual results by The Daily Citizen’s deadline. Murray County’s victory followed a 65-15 win for Gladden — the Indians’ feeder program — over Bagley, the feeder school for North Murray.
• Southeast split a pair of duals at Ridgeland, losing 40-36 to Ringgold but beating the host Panthers 50-29.
Going 2-0 for the Raiders (15-18) were Noah Bartenfield (106), Levi Kelley (113), Tyler Brown (145), Dylan Burch (152), Austin Allen (182) and Garrett McClure (285).
• Northwest Whitfield girls 62, Heritage 27: A trio of Northwest players scored in double figures — Kylee Ward with 17 points, Aubrey Young with 13 and Lindsey Roberts with 10 — as the Lady Bruins remained undefeated through 14 games.
• LaFayette girls 44, Southeast 27: Maddie Pearson and Isabel Salinas each had six points as the Lady Raiders (9-4) lost at home.
• Southeast boys 43, LaFayette 35: Jake Amos had 19 points and Keaton McCutchen finished with 10 for the host Raiders (12-4).
• Dalton girls 51, Ridgeland 24: Kirsten Deal scored 14 points and Alex Brumbelow had 10 to pace the scoring for the Lady Cats (7-3), while Hailey Jones added eight assists in the road win.
• North Murray girls 45, Coahulla Creek 12: Hannah Long and Kayla Kvastad each had nine points for the Lady Mountaineers (7-3) as they rolled at home.