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Lady Hornets wax Wesson; land 2A semifinals berth

WESSON — Defense proved to be the key word for the Loyd StarLady Hornets Tuesday night. When the offense struggled, the LadyHornets’ defense pulled them through for a 43-17 win over the hostLady Cobras in the first round of the Division 6-2A tournament.

Loyd Star (15-10) advances to the semifinals Thursday againstHinds AHS at 4 p.m. Hinds AHS eliminated Madison St. Joseph 51-35in the other first-round game Tuesday.

In tonight’s only girls game, Piney Woods faces McLaurin at 6p.m. Thursday’s girls semifinals features the Piney Woods-McLaurinwinner meeting the No. 1 St. Andrew’s girls at 7.

“We played a good defensive game and rebounded,” said Loyd Stargirls coach Lori Britt after the win. “We did a good job of doingthat. We weren’t real smooth on offense.”

Loyd Star junior point guard Jordan Britt hit a three-pointerand followed up with a field goal to give the Lady Hornets an 11-5lead going into the second quarter.

Both teams struggled from the free throw line in second-quarteraction as Loyd Star pushed its lead to 16-7 at halftime. On thenight, Loyd Star was 11 of 25 and Wesson 4 of 13.

The Lady Hornets blew open the game in the third quarter with a14-3 run on the Lady Cobras to take a 20-point, 30-10, lead goinginto the final frame.

“We jumped on them,” said Loyd Star senior post-player AshtonWilliams who finished with two points and six rebounds. “We want towin district. We’re trying to get through the tournament.”

Guard Sarah Lofton, the other senior on the Loyd Star team, feltthe same way. “We outhustled them.” Lofton finished with fourpoints.

Powering the Loyd Star girls with 15 points, 11 rebounds and sixsteals was junior forward Shara Johnson. Britt fired in 12 points,grabbed eight rebounds, made five steals and had four assists.

“We didn’t show up,” answered Wesson girls coach Jemmye AnnHelms when asked about her team’s sluggish performance. “We weren’tplaying well at the end (of the season). Loyd Star played well.Shara Johnson had a good night.

“Loyd Star is traditionally good,” added Helms. “They know howto win at this time of the year.”

For 8-18 Wesson, junior forward Megan Allen was the leadingscorer with nine points. Senior post-player Anna Johnson collectedseven rebounds.

Hinds AHS 51, St. Joe 35

Jerrica Thomas directed the Hinds AHS girls with 14 points.Netting 13 was Dominique Good.

Neisha Anderson had 10 points for Madison St. Joe. Mandy Andrewsfinished with seven points.