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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Lady Champs overcome early struggles, bury Eagleville in 2nd half

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Elora Skuce helped lead the perimeter assault against the Eagleville Lady Eagles on Friday. She, along with teammate Kelsey Parker, led the Lady Champs with 12 points. (T-G File Photo by Chris Siers)
EAGLEVILLE -- After struggling to find their traction in the first quarter during Friday night's District 9-A match up against Eagleville, the Lady Champs were finally able to get some offense moving capitalize on a big rally to hold an early lead.

Despite those early woes, it was the Lady Champion defense that proved clutch in the second half, as Cascade gave up just seven total points to the Lady Eagles, which allowed the Lady Champs to advance and pick up the 46-31 win.

Starting struggle

"We didn't play our best. We kind of struggled a little bit. We came out a little sluggish. We got down by about seven points, but we came back," said Cascade coach Chad Spencer.

Even with the offensive drought in the first part of the opening frame, Cascade still managed to outscore the home team 17-9.

But the Lady Eagles roared back in the second with 15 points, and trimmed the Cascade lead to just one point at the break.

Needing to find some way to shut Eagleville down for good, Spencer called for a few halftime adjustments which proved invaluable in the second half.

Changes work

Cascade limited Eagleville scorers to just seven total points in the second half, while the Lady Champs added 21 more.

Kelsey Parker set the tone for the Lady Champs in the third quarter with a pair of big treys to help put the Lady Eagles away for good.

Spencer credited the Lady Champion press to help force several turnovers and give Cascade more scoring opportunities.

"Our press really gave them some trouble. We just didn't play the defense that we've been playing up to this point. We made a few adjustments at halftime and played a lot better," Spencer said.

Simpson shines

Despite the struggles, Eagleville had no answer for Haylee Simpson's presence in the lane. She crashed the boards all night and totaled 13 rebounds for the winners.

With Simpson dominating the boards, it was two more seniors that stepped up and led the team in scoring.

In addition to Parker's team-high 12 points, Elora Skuce added a dozen as well, including a pair of 3-pointers.

While the senior duo both banked game-high points, the Lady Champs still were able to spread the offense and put seven more players in the scoring column.

Michelle Johnson led the home team with nine points, but didn't get much more help on the offensive side of the ball.

9-A perfection

The win makes it four-straight for Cascade and keeps the Lady Champs' district record perfect, with a 3-0 standing.

With Friday's battle in the rearview mirror, Cascade's sights shift towards the Forrest Lady Rockets (3-5 0-2 9-A) on Tuesday night.

"We're going to work and try to keep getting better. We play Forrest Tuesday night which will be a tough game for us," Spencer said.

Cascade 17 8 10 11 -- 46

Eagleville 9 15 5 2 -- 31

Cascade: Elora Skuce 12, Kelsey Parker 12, Haylee Simpson 6, Jessica Ervin 5, Maya Gaston 4, Katie Vincent 3, Karly Grissom, Haley Edmondson 1, Andrea Pigg 1.

Eagleville: Michelle Johnson 9, Alli Burns 7, Nicole Duke 5, Kristin Barnes 4, Kanya Hackney 2, Taylor Turnagle, Taylor Reed 2,

3-point goals: Cascade (5): Parker 2, Skuce 2, Vincent 1; Eagleville (3): Johnson 1, Duke 1, Burns 1.

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