NP Cougars 1/11/13

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 11, 2013

Cougars smash Dragons

By Brad Greer

Having lost  seven of their last eight games, the North Panola Lady Cougars were looking for a spark to break its four-game losing streak as they hosted Marks Palmer Tuesday night in a Region 3-3A matchup.

Led by Kiana Willingham’s 14 points, the Lady Cougars got back into the district race with a 63-20 romp over the Dragons. With the victory, North Panola improved to 2-3 in district play and 7-9 overall.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

North Panola jumped out to a 17-0 first quarter lead before the Dragons scored their first points with 16 seconds remaining in the period. Onesha Hunt  scored six of her eight points on the night in the opening stanza.

The second quarter turned out to be much of the same as the Cougars led at one point 33-5 thanks in part to uncontested lay ups on a series of turnovers by Palmer.

Daryleshia Ward accounted for eight of her 10 points on the night while Audrea Taylor, Willingham and Teariny Wheatley added four points each as the Cougars took a commanding 43-9 lead at intermission.

Wheatley and Ward followed Willingham with 10 points each while Taylor added nine. Anna Johnson chipped in with six points while Tireny Webb contributed with four. Whitney Pettis finished with two points.

Desiree Orange and Valencia Taylor paced Palmer with five and four points each.

North Panola (boys)- 72 Palmer- 57
In a battle of two undefeated district teams, North Panola outlasted a pesky Palmer squad 72-57 to take over sole possession of first place with a 5-0 mark.

Robert Oliver poured in 16 points and pulled down 11 rebounds as the Cougars improved to 13-5 on the season.

In a game that was closer than the score indicated, North Panola held double digit leads on four different occasions only to have Palmer cut the deficit to under 10 points.

The Cougars held leads of 47-33 and 54-44 in the second half before the Dragons trimmed the lead to 58-52 with 3:30 remaining in the contest.

Ketawan House’s layup  gave the home team some breathing room with a 64-54 lead with 2:38 left to play. From there it was all North Panola as Oliver scored his teams’ last eight points of the game.

North Panola came out smoking in the first quarter as Darrius Jackson connected on a pair of three-pointers and Gerotney Kelson added six points for a 23-10 Cougar lead.

Palmer responded with a 9-0 run to close the margin to 23-19 in the opening minutes of the second quarter. The Cougars answered with an 8-1 run of their own to make the score 31-20 at the 4:38 mark.

Palmer’s Ladarius Jones, who led all scorers with 20 points on the night, banked home a jumper with 2:06 left to make the score 31-26. Cougars’ House later added a three-point play to give the Cougars a 35-27 lead with 1:36 to go before halftime.

After leading 37-31 at the break, North Panola maintained a three possession lead throughout the third quarter as Kelson nailed a trey to give the Cougars a 54-46 lead to start the fourth quarter.

Kelson chipped in with 13 points and three steals while House added 12 points, six assists, three rebounds and three steals.

Jackson contributed with nine points and six boards while Devonte Howard also had nine points.

Anjayvious Farmer registered six points and eight rebounds while JaAnthony Wright added four points. Demetrick Porter and Michael Miller rounded out the scoring with two and one point each.

North Panola will step out of division play to host Water Valley today starting at 4 p.m. with junior varsity boys and girls action followed by the varsity.