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Raiderettes down City after back-to-back weekend losses

Posted on Friday, January 17, 2014 at 2:24 pm

Moore County junior Makayla Ray drives in for a shot in the paint during the first half of Saturday’s game against Tullahoma. (MCN Photo by Robert Holman)

Moore County junior Makayla Ray drives in for a shot in the paint during the first half of Saturday’s game against Tullahoma. (MCN Photo by Robert Holman)

After back-to-back losses, the Moore County High School girls basketball team got back into the winning column with a dominating win at Fayetteville City on Tuesday night.

The 47-27 victory was a welcome respite from a pair of tough losses over the weekend. More importantly, Tuesday’s road win kept the Raiderettes above .500 in District 9-A play, keeping MCHS (13-8 overall, 4-3 District 9-A) in fourth place. That’s a key spot, just a half game ahead of Eagleville (10-10, 3-3), a team that Moore County has to play twice in its final seven regular season games.

The win over the Lady Tigers in Fayetteville Tuesday night also helped Moore County forget — at least partially — a disastrous third and fourth quarter against Tullahoma on Saturday evening. After holding an 11-point lead, 32-21, Moore County was outscored by Tullahoma 42-9 over the final 13 minutes and lost to the Lady Wildcats 63-41.

Moore County struggled against a quick and physical Tullahoma (7-6) team. The Raiderettes committed a bevy of turnovers late in the contest that led to easy Tullahoma baskets. Moore County’s line-up of youngsters failed to jump out on Tullahoma’s three-point shooters, while the Raiderettes also had trouble in the interior against THS post players Kalyah Bland and Ashlyn McDonald.

After Moore County closed out the half on a 14-0 run to build a 28-20 lead at intermission, Tullahoma battled back in the third quarter. Bland, a senior, took over the game for the Lady Wildcats, as Tullahoma scored 10-straight points to cut the deficit to 32-31 with 2:29 remaining in the quarter.

The visitors then scored seven of the final 10 points in the quarter, to take a 38-35 lead into the final frame. Bland, who finished with a team-high 12 points in the game despite playing just three periods, put up seven points for the Lady Wildcats in the third quarter.

Tullahoma outscored Moore County 25-6 over the game’s final eight minutes.

Kursten Hawkins led Moore County with a game-high 21 points. Sloan Mann chipped nine. McDonald added 10 for Tullahoma.

Saturday’s game came just 24 hours after a tough 53-42 loss to district foe Community. The Viqueens (14-3, 7-1) solidified their hold atop the 9-A standings with a hard-earned win.

Community used a couple of big runs to pull away from the Raiderettes and claim the key district victory. Sophomore Sarah Pierce poured in 28 points for Community, which actually trailed 21-20 at halftime.

The visiting Viqueens opened the game on a 10-0 run before Moore County finally caught its breath and answered to take the lead late in the second period, getting a buzzer-beater from Hawkins to take the halftime lead.

Community outscored MCHS 18-7 in the third quarter to regain the advantage, however.

Mann led the Raiderettes with 20, while Makayla Ray scored eight and Hawkins added six.

Moore County has another Friday/Saturday doubleheader this weekend as the Raiderettes host Huntland at 6 p.m. this Friday and host Lincoln County at 6 p.m. on Saturday. Five of the final contests are district games.