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Lady Champs stun 3A foe Franklin Co., 59-55

Monday, November 19, 2012

(Photo)
Jessica Ervin flies past the Rebelette defense and goes hard to the hoop for a first-half bucket. She banked a team-high 16 points for the Lady Champs.
(T-G Photo by Chris Siers) [Order this photo]
WINCHESTER -- The Cascade Lady Champions (1-0) got just the start they wanted to the 2012-2013 campaign with a 59-55 win over 3A foe Franklin County.

Despite being out-sized at several positions on the floor, the Champs stood toe-to-toe for a full four quarters and were able to not only compete, but win several individual battles against the Rebelettes on Monday night.

"We're not the biggest kids, we're not the strongest, and we're not the most skilled--but we know the game of basketball. I couldn't be more proud," Spencer said.

That knowledge proved valuable in a close battle through all four quarters, especially matching up against the Franklin County leaders.

Cascade had a tough time trying to contain Rebelette standout player, Dee Jordan, who banked a game-high 31 points, all of which came inside the paint.

Even with Jordan's 31 points, the Lady Champs were able to spread out the attack and get key points from several contributors.

We did a great job of attacking the basket and getting to the free throw line. I was very proud of the way my girls fought through adversity through the game. Numerous girls were on the floor at different times with two and three and four fouls. We just played through it and played smart.

Jessica Ervin came off the bench early in the game and went to work on Franklin County, propelling Cascade out in front.

Early on in the game, the Lady Champs fell behind 8-2 at one point in the first quarter. But Cascade stormed back and knotted the game at 13 apiece after one quarter of play.

The pace of the game didn't change much in the second frame either. Both teams battled down to the wire and went into the half with Cascade in control 26-25.

A key factor in Monday's outcome was being able to force fouls, getting to the line, and making them count.

The Rebelettes had a whopping 14 first-half fouls, a good majority of which led to trips to the charity stripe for the Lady Champs.

(Photo)
Andrea Pigg powers her way to the paint and goes for a shot. She scored three points for the Lady Champs on Monday.
(T-G Photo by Chris Siers) [Order this photo]
The Lady Champs made their trips count, too. Cascade cashed in on 21-of-32 tries from the line, with Ervin knocking down 9-of-11 attempts.

Still, Franklin County made a game of it with a deadly perimeter attack that led to five made treys.

"We knew they could shoot the ball from the perimeter just from what I saw of them last year," Spencer said.

Even with the outside attack, Cascade was still able to concentrate a good majority of its points from inside the paint.

Freshman Maya Gaston came into the game in the second half and added eight key points.

"She's a freshman. She got some big rebounds and got some big put backs," Spencer said.

Even with Gaston's efforts, Jordan continued to pound away at the scoreboard in the second half, and nearly engineered a comeback for the Rebelettes.

But Cascade simply had too many weapons and was able to hold on for the victory.

While Ervin led the Lady Champs, seniors Haylee Simpson and Haley Edmondson added big points for the winners as well, scoring 11 and 8 points, respectively.

The win marks more than just a "W" on the stats sheet. It's not often a 1A team knocks off a 3A team that could be the momentum boost Cascade needs heading into the gauntlet of teams it will face in the Forrest Thanksgiving Classic later this week.

"It's a big win for the program. It's a great way to start the season. Our schedule doesn't get any lighter going through the Thanksgiving tournament," Spencer said.

Cascade will tip off against Creek Wood on Wednesday in the Forrest Thanksgiving Tournament.

Cascade 13 13 14 19 -- 59

Franklin Co. 13 12 13 17 -- 55

Cascade: Jessica Ervin 16, Haylee Simpson 11, Haley Edmondson 8, Maya Gaston 7, Kelsey Parker 6, Elora Skuce 5, Katie Vincent 3, Andrea Pigg 3.

Franklin Co.: Dee Jordan 31, Chelsea Holman 9, Emily Mathis 8, Demi Hart 3, Chelsea Stovall 3, Haley Meeks 1.

3-Point goals: Franklin Co. (5): Mathis 2, Stovall 1, Holman 1, Myers 1; Cascade (2): Ervin 1, Pigg 1.

Halftime score: Cascade 26, Franklin Co. 25.


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