Lady Cougars clip PurvisPublished 12:00pm Thursday, February 20, 2014
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SUMMIT – Lawrence County defeated Purvis 36-33, in girls’ action, on the opening night of the Division 7-4A basketball tournament, at North Pike. After handling Purvis easily in two regular-season games, the Lady Cougars found the going a bit tough in Tuesday’s do-or-die affair. Purvis actually led with 2 minutes left in the game, but clutch play by senior Shayla Kees and sophomore Deneisha Dickson extended the Lady Cougars’ season.
With the win, Vicki Rutland’s girls improved 10-21 on the season, and advanced into Thursday’s tournament semi-finals, where they will face South Pike. The victory also assures Lawrence County of playing into next week’s South State 4A playoffs. A win in Thursdays semi-final would not only propel the Lady Cougars into Friday’s final, but also a chance to host that first-round playoff game.
“Obviously, that’s what we’d love to do,” said LCHS coach Vicki Rutland, who has piloted her Lady Cougars deep into the 4A playoffs for five straight seasons. “We’d love to play one more home game.
“That said, we’re just happy to still be playing at all,” Rutland added. “The win over Purvis gets us at least three more games to play, and that’s huge in its own right.”
Lawrence County, the number three seed in the six-team division, has lost twice this season to second-seeded South Pike. That game is slated for 4 o’clock Thursday afternoon, at Southwest Mississippi Community College, which sits adjacent to the North Pike campus.
Against Purvis, the Lady Cougars were led by Dickson and Kees, who combined for all 15 of Lawrence County’s second-half points. Dickson scored 10 points, while Kees contributed 9 points and 4 rebounds. Haven Johnson added 6 points, 4 rebounds, and 2 assists. Alexsundria Thomas led the Lady Cougars in rebounding with 6.
Lightening-quick point guard Samantha Sattler led Purvis with 16 points. India McGinty added 8.
Following the LCHS-South Pike girls’ game, Lawrence County will take on host North Pike in a boys’ semi-final.