Lady Bombers Busy Week
Tim Taylor, KPI Staff
Lady Bombers Busy Week
The Ballard Memorial Lady Bombers went 2-4 during the week, including their first win of the season against Livingston County.
The week started with a district loss on December 16th at the Green Palace against Graves County. The Lady Bombers struggled with their three point defense. After the Lady Bombers took a 21-20 lead on an Abbi Denton three point play with 3:08 remaining in the opening half, the Lady Eagles were able to hold Ballard Memorial scoreless the remainder of the half. The Lady Eagles outscored the Lady Bombers 8-0 to end the half. This included hitting their sixth three point shot of the game just before the opening half buzzer. Graves County picked right up in the second half where they left off as they outscored the Lady Bombers 15-3 to open the half to take the commanding 45-24 lead. The Lady Bombers would trim the lead to 52-40 to start the fourth quarter on a Denton field goal. That would be as close as the Lady Bombers would get as they fell 73-57 to the Lady Eagles. The Lady Eagles hit 11 of 19 three pointers in the contest for the win.
On Tuesday night the 17, the Lady Bombers traveled to Livingston County where the host Lady Cardinals dominated the opening period. Livingston led 23-17 after the opening eight minutes and held the 34-23 lead at the intermission. The Bomber’s defense came out ready to play in the second half as they really shut down the Lady Cardinals. The Lady Bombers held Livingston to six points total over the last 16 minutes. Ballard Memorial tied the game up at 36 all at the end of the third quarter and outlasted the Lady Cardinals in the fourth quarter for the 44-40 victory. On picking up her first varsity coaching victory, Coach Kayla Vance said, “It’s a very nice feeling for sure,” and she added about her team’s second half performance, “They showed what kind of team they can be.”
The Lady Bombers then completed their game against McCracken County on Thursday the 19th that had previously been cancelled due to snow back on December 6th. The Lady Mustangs made the opening score on the initial tip to take the early lead. The Lady Bombers would then take control of the first half as they built the lead to 22-13 when Kenzie Blackford connected on two of three free throws after being fouled on a three point attempt. The Lady Mustangs would respond and would trim the lead to 24-20 after the opening quarter. The Lady Bombers would score the first seven points of the second quarter to take their biggest lead at 31-20. The three point shot defense came back to haunt the Lady Bombers again as McCracken would hit four treys to end the half. The Lady Bombers still maintained the 39-38 lead at the break. After both teams exchanged a pair of three point shots to start the second half, the Lady Mustangs would take over. They extended the lead to as much as five points and held the 60-57 advantage heading into the final eight minutes. The Lady Mustangs would extend the lead as they hit 11 free throws before Ballard Memorial would attempt a free throw in the quarter. With Denton fouled out of the game, the Lady Bombers struggled offensively to maintain offensive continuity. The Lady Mustangs dominated the final eight minutes for the 86-69 victory.
The Lady Bombers had little time for rest as they traveled to Lyon County for a two day-three game tournament. They started with a hard fought 50-45 victory on Friday night against Todd County Central. After trailing by one after the opening period, the Bombers won the game in the second quarter where they outscored Todd County Central 13-8 and held the 21-15 halftime advantage. The two teams had an evenly played second half and the Lady Bombers hit 16 of 22 free throws in the game to seal the five point victory and second win on the year.
The long week appeared to take its toll on the Lady Bombers Saturday where they started off with an 11:30 game that morning against McLean County. The Lady Bombers had the 28-27 halftime lead, but struggled from three point land and the free throw line as they hit on only 2 of 14 three point attempts and eight of 17 free throws in the 59-47 loss.
Things did not go much better with the 6:30 game against Lyon County. The Lady Lyons set the tone early hitting a pair of three point shots for the early 6-0 lead. They Lady Bombers would trim the lead to 7-6 at the end of the first quarter, but Denton got into early foul trouble and had to sit much of the second quarter as Lyon built the 23-12 halftime lead. Hailey Houston and Blackford scored the first two buckets of the second half to cut the lead to seven, but another three point shot from Lyon County would stop the Lady Bomber advance. Lyon County would extend the lead to 45-28 at the end of the third quarter and went on to capture their own tournament title with the 58-43 victory over Ballard Memorial.
Denton led the team in scoring with 94 points over the six game span including a team high 29 against Graves County. Leah Shelley had 73 points including a team high 22 against McLean County. Both Houston and Blackford had 46 points while Shelby Rollings contributed 23. Ashleigh Tyson was in double figures with 12 points while Meghan Walker hit a couple of treys against Lyon County for her six points. Kayto Buchanon added five points and Erin Young added two points. “We’ve got to work on moving our feet on defense and staying out of foul trouble,” said Coach Vance as she added, “When they start trusting each other, we’re going to be alright and we’re going to start winning some more games.” The Lady Bombers will enjoy their Christmas Break before playing their next game in January.