LYNCHBURG – The Motlow Lady Bucks started the new year in grand fashion Tuesday night, putting the bitter taste of the first half of their season behind them when they hosted and beat the Martin Methodist College JV team 90-47 at Copperweld Arena.
The Lady Bucks (1-11, 0-7) never trailed in the contest, and the final margin of 43 points was the largest lead of the night for the home team. The 43-point win was the eighth-largest margin of victory in the 40-year history of Lady Bucks’ basketball.
“We have had some really great practices since coming back from winter break and it showed tonight,” said Aaron Holland, now in his second season as head coach of the Lady Bucks. “We did a great job of sharing the ball and looking for the open teammate. We still have a lot of work to do, especially from a rebounding standpoint, but it was good to get the proverbial monkey off our back.”
The Lady Bucks will travel to Birmingham to face non-conference Lawson State on Saturday, Jan. 11, and then both Motlow teams will return to Tennessee Community College Athletic Association (TCCAA) play when they host Dyersburg State on Friday, Jan. 17. Tipoff is scheduled for 6 p.m.
Freshmen Alexis Smith and Briana McDonald each had double-doubles to lead the Motlow attack, while all 10 Lady Bucks that played in the game got in the scoring column. Motlow connected on 10 three-point shots, tied for the fourth most in a single game in school history.
McDonald, who finished with 15 points, 14 rebounds, three steals and two assists, got the offense started with the first of her three 3-point baskets in the first minute. Motlow built a 33-13 lead with 3:40 remaining in the first half, but the visitors hit 13-18 free throws in the first 20 minutes and trailed 37-25 at halftime.
Smith, who had her best game as a Lady Buck with 22 points, 11 rebounds, two steals, an assist and a blocked shot, scored 15 of her points in the second half as the Lady Bucks extended a 41-30 lead to a 72-42 advantage with eight minutes remaining.
Lacy Gaines scored 15 points and added four rebounds and two steals. Chelsea Holman had nine points, three rebounds, two assists and a blocked shot. Bree Horner and Kayla Pope each had eight points, with Horner adding three rebounds, two assists and a steal.
Erin Thomas led the Lady Bucks in assists with four while adding three points and three rebounds. Kaley Rogers had five points, two rebounds and an assist, Andi LaPietra pulled down six rebounds and blocked three shots, and Chloe Neil hit her only bucket, a three pointer, at the final buzzer.
The Red Hawks ended the night connecting on 19-30 free throws, while Motlow hit 10-13 from the charity stripe. Milana Jones led Martin Methodist with 13 points and 16 rebounds.