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NP Lady Cougar Basketball

Lady Cougars and Independence to hoop it up at 10

By Brad Greer
If there is one word that could best describe this year’s North Panola Lady Cougar basketball team it would be fearless.

So far this season the Lady Cougars have stepped on the hardwood against some of the state’s best girls basketball teams. Olive Branch, undefeated 2A powerhouse Coldwater, twice, you name it, North Panola has played them all.

Thursday afternoon, the Lady Cougars stepped on the court against the No.1 ranked  Class 2A team H.W. Byers Lions .

While the results were not in their favor, the young Lady Cougars who started one senior and three freshman, stood toe-to-toe with the mighty Lions for a quarter before falling 71-35.

Jenisha Jackson, Latoya Wilbourn and Brittany Patton each had three points apiece  as the Cougars trailed 19-13 after the first quarter, but that’s when the Lions flexed their muscles.

Kourtney Coleman put back of her own missed shot was the start of a 15-4 run to take a 34-17 lead with four minutes before halftime. Marian Parker hit a jumper  from the right corner with under a minute remaining to give the Lions a 40-19 halftime cushion.

The second half was all Byers as they went on a 10-0 run to start the third period and never looked back. Parker led the Lions (14-0) with 14 points. Ciara Seldon followed with 11 and Briomme Gulledge added 10 points.

About the only bright spot the the Cougars was the play of  Jenisha Jackson. The six-foot-two sophomore led North Panola in scoring with 14 points that included nine in the second half. Catonya Newsom, Shavetta Gordon and Wilbourn  each recorded six points while Patton added three.

“They (Byers) execute so well that them and Coldwater are pretty equal. We’re just so young right now. All we can do is just ask the girls to give the best effort they can, “said North Panola head coach Chris Yancy.

The Cougars shot 37 percent from the floor, but turned the ball over 26 times while the Lions connected on 31-of 64 shots from the floor for 48 percent.

The loss set up a second-round game with Independence Friday today at 10 a.m.

The winner will play at 1 p.m. on Saturday and the loser will play at 10 a.m. Saturday.