Red River staved off a furious closing rally by West Monroe on Thursday night to win 53-50 in the first game of the inaugural MetroPCS Battle on the Hardwood Classic at the Huntington gym.
The Lady Bulldogs (2-1) led by 16 points at the end of the fourth quarter, but the Lady Rebels (1-1) ripped off a 10-0 run to open the final frame behind six points from Jay Kay Kendall. Lakeya Lewis stopped the run with a 3-pointer for Red River’s first bucket midway through the quarter.
Then McNeese-signee Jahquell Robinson, who took the first three quarters off offensively, connected on a trio of treys to get her team within 51-50 with 7 seconds remaining. But Red River’s Makayia Hallmon converted two free throws and Morgyn Payne forced a Lady Rebels’ turnover to seal the win. Robinson scored 12 of her 14 points in the final three minutes of the contest.
“Whew. When we lost Oksanna (Williams) to fouls I knew it was going to be tough,” Red River coach Jamie Antilley said. “We’re still trying to figure out where our leadership will come from after Kimberly (Burton) graduated last year. She was the glue that pulled everyone together.”
West Monroe coach John Green said his inexperienced team learned a lot despite the loss.
“This is who we are. We have youth and some seniors who haven’t played a lot,” he said. “We’re trying to figure ourselves out. But Red River outplayed us and deserved to win. We tried to turn it on too little too late.”
The Lady Rebels jumped out to an 8-2 lead midway through the opening quarter before the first of five 3-pointers by Lewis started a run that pulled the Coushatta club within 12-11 heading to the second frame. The Lady Bulldogs got the lead at 18-16 with about 6 minutes to play in the first half and never relinquished it.
Lewis led the way with 15 points, followed by Hallmon with 13 and Payne with 9. Robinson topped the Lady Rebels with 14 points followed by Kendall and Faith Robinson with 11 apiece.
South Beauregard 67, Bossier 56: Destiny Thomas scored 11 points while Chrishawna Jones and Dranautika Thomas added 9 apiece for the Lady Bearkats in a losing cause.
Southwood 69, Woodlawn 51: At Woodlawn, Jaiylan Brown poured in 16 points, Ah’million Cosby 15 and Denisha Hall 10 to lead the Lady Cowboys against their crosstown rivals. Margo Pleze pumped in 12 and Janecia Kendrick 10 for the Lady Knights.
North DeSoto 52, Lakeside 35: Bayli Simon scored 15 points as the Lady Griffins got past LaCandria Key (10 points) and Lakeside in tournament play.
Airline 48, Benton 43: Traciona Russell scored 14 points and Zahria Lloyd 12 as the Lady Vikings (2-0) got the win versus Qua Chambers (16 points) and Emily Ward (14).
Minden 50, Haughton 52: The Lady Tide placed four player in double digits led by Derrica Gilbert with 15 points. Bre Rogers added 13, Sha Whiting 12 and Destini Powell 11 for coach Jacob Brown.
Wossman 69 Fair Park 48: Despite 19 points from Tytianna Wynn and 15 from Deborah Ford, the Lady Indians lost.
Byrd 71, Minden 41: At Sibley, Stephen Bates scored 13 points to lead the Yellow Jackets for the second night in the Don Stahl Memorial Tournament.
Bastrop 45, Haynesville 39: Denterrius McHenry dropped in 14 points with Carl Davis adding 11 and Jordan Rabun 10 for the Rams.
Doyline 53, Haughton 44: Thanks to 16 points from Jatavion Jackson, Doyline won in the Don Stahl Memorial Tournament.
Lincoln Prep 65, Gibsland-Coleman 64: Kae Williams posted a double-double of 18 points and 14 rebounds, while Chanse Robinson nearly equaled the efort with 18 points and 13 boards for the Kittens. Tylan Dean added 11 points with 8 rebounds.