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Originally published: 2014-02-16 01:50:19
Last modified: 2014-02-16 01:51:05

Hickory girls pound Watauga with press

by Steve Behr Sports Editor

HICKORY -- Hickory's traditional full-court press can be the toughest for rival Northwestern Conference teams to solve.

Watauga found out the hard way on Saturday. Hickory used a newer version of its full-court press that forced some early turnovers in the Red Tornadoes' 70-42 victory at David Craft Gym.

Hickory, which is ranked No. 2 in 3-A in ncpreps.com, stayed unbeaten at 20-0 overall, 13-0 in the NWC.

Watauga (7-16, 5-8 NWC) turned the ball over 10 times during the first quarter when Hickory took a 22-10 lead. The Pioneers failed to get the ball cross the half-court line two times, and Hickory scored on four of its first five possessions.

"We've been working on that," Hickory coach Barbara Helms said. "It's a little change up, a different look. We were patient and we got a couple of 10-second calls of off it."

Hickory eventually took a 46-17 halftime lead after opening the second quarter with a 13-1 run. Hickory shot 18-of-28 from the field in the first half, and forced 22 Watauga turnovers in the first half.

The Pioneers finished with 32 overall turnovers, compared to just 13 for the Red Tornadoes.

After falling behind by as much as 62-19 in the third quarter, Watauga started to show a little life by outscoring mostly Hickory's reserves 23-6 the rest of the game.

"Our young kids did a great job," Watauga coach Klay Anderson said. "They came in and they played their rear-ends off. We challenged them at halftime because I was very disappointed in how we came out. I was very disappointed in our apathetic demeanor. That's the only way I can describe it. It was just kind of lackadaisical. We didn't have a lot of fight in us. If you're going to get beat, have a little fight in you."

Savanna Wood finished with 10 points after making two 3-point shots. Ryan Loflin added eight points and Clare Harris scored six.

All but one of the Pioneers who played scored at least two points.

Hickory's talented duo of Yasmen Hannah and Danasia Witherspoon keyed Hickory's offense. Hannah scored 18 points, while Witherspoon added 12.

Victoria Eckerd added 11 for the Red Tornadoes.

Watauga has to wait to see when its next game will be. The league's coaches meet today to discuss the seedings for the Northwestern Conference Tournament, but the Pioneers have yet to play South Caldwell a second time.

The Spartans were supposed to play at Watauga on Friday, but the game was postponed because of inclement weather. The latest the game could be made up would be Monday.

 

Hickory girls 70, Watauga 42

Watauga 42 (7-16, 5-8)

Millsaps 2 1-2 5, Wood 2 4-5 10, Harris 2 1-2 6, Carroll 1 1-3 3, Loflin 1 6-10 8, McNeill 1 0-0 2, Stapleton 1 0-0 2, Jones 1 0-1 2, Foutz 1 0-0 2, Brown 0 0-0 0. Totals 13 13-22 42.

Hickory 70 (20-0, 13-0)

McClain 2 2-2 6, Setzer 1 0-0 2, Eckerd 5 1-3 11, Witherspoon 5 2-3 12, Hannah 7 4-5 18, Dixon 2 0-2 6, Mervin 2 0-0 5, Tipps 3 0-0 6, Miller 2 0-0 4, Holton 0 0-0 0, Cameron 0 0-0 0. Totals 29 9-15 70.

Watauga          10   7 11 14 -- 42

Hickory           23 23 18   6 -- 70

3-point goals--Watauga 3 (Wood 2, Harris), Hickory 3 (Dixon 2, Mervin). Rebounds--Watauga 35 (Wood 7), Hickory 23 (Tipps 5). Turnovers--Watauga 32, Hickory 13. Total fouls--Watauga 17, Hickory 13. Fouled out--None. Technical fouls--None.