Lady Warriors get first round victory as they start their state championship defense

The Lady Warriors took a dominant 62-24 win over the Itawamba Lady Indians on Tuesday Night in the first round of playoffs.   

The Lady Warriors won the jump and were on the board first after Allie Beckley took it in with a layup on their second possession.  The Lady Warriors struggled to find their groove through the first, with the Lady Indians sinking two threes, courtesy of Kelsei Dilworth and Kiyiah Adams, while the Lady Warriors were uncharacteristically absent outside the arch. 

However, Jamyia Bowen brought the heat on defense and led the Lady Warriors on offense with six points, while two baskets from Beckley put the Lady Warriors just two shy of matching the Lady Indians at the end of the first, trailing 10-12. 

The Lady Warriors came out of the gate fast to start the second with Bowen on the board again, tying up the game, and starting a thirteen-point streak that propelled the Lady Warriors to a 23-12 lead.  The Lady Warriors continued to thrive off this newfound pulse, with Samya Brooks, who was noticeably quiet in the first, connecting for ten points in the second, followed closely by nine more from Bowen.  A host of other Lady Warriors stepped in on both offense and defense, holding the Lady Indians to only one point, and despite their slow start, the Lady Warriors ended the half up 36-13.

Riley Stanford opened the second half of play with two, quickly followed by another basket from Brooks.  The Lady Indians went to the line for a pair of free throws, connecting on 2/2, leaving the score at 40-15 before another Lady Warrior point streak, ending with back-to-back threes from Sadie Stegall and Bowen, pushed the score to 56-15.  Another point from the free throw line courtesy of Dilworth put up the third and final point for the Lady Indians, before Stegall closed out the quarter with her second three at the buzzer, setting the score at 61-16 heading into the final quarter. 

The Lady Indians put up six points in the fourth, a basket from Dilworth, and 4/6 from the line.  Mackenzie McGuirt connected on a buzzer beating basket to put up the only points of the quarter for the Lady Warriors, leaving them with an even forty-point victory.  

Bowen led the Lady Warriors with 22 points, followed by Brooks with 16, and Beckley with 8. 

The Lady Warriors will take on the Lady Whippets of Kosciusko Friday night at 7:00.    

Sadie Stegall for 3. Pic Credit: Whitney Robbins/Pontotoc Sports

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