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Lady Comets work their way past Person

 

Lady Comets guard Lexi Tucker scored a game-high 16 points, 10 coming in an 18-8 run in the second quarter that gave Halifax County the lead for good, and the Comets defeated Person High School 56-43 Wednesday at Comets Gym.

Ashley Hill worked inside for 12 points, eight coming at the free throw line, while Janiyah Logan, Jaynee Campbell and Che’Lese Bowman scored six points, Briyana Jackson and Brianna Lindsey four points apiece, and Mecca Cole two points for Halifax County (4-4), which avenged an earlier loss to the Rockets in Roxboro.

 

Halifax County scored the first basket but trailed for a good portion of the first half before taking the lead for good at 26-35 on a Hill foul shot midway through the second quarter.

A Campbell three-pointer and four straight free throws by Tucker helped give the Comets a 32-27 lead at halftime, and Tucker hit a field goal and three-pointer in the late stages of the third quarter as the advantage grew to 44-30.

Buckets from Akria Outlaw and Christine Harris cut Person’s deficit to 44-34 at the beginning of the fourth quarter, but a Hill steal, score and made free throw for a three-point play started a 10-1 run that sealed the game for Halifax County.

The game against Person played out pretty much the same way as it did in the team’s earlier meeting, a 58-49 win for the Rockets in Roxboro, except with the roles reversed, according to Comets’ Head Coach Matthew McCargo.

The game was a physical, hard-fought and sometimes sloppily-played affair between two relatively inexperienced teams, with neither side giving an inch.

“It evens our record at 4-4, and we’ve said with this team if we could play .500 this year it would help us prepare for the next season as we rebuild,” said McCargo.

“We still want to win the Western Valley.  We still want to win the Christmas Classic and all those things.

“We all sort of know what this team is capable of, but we have a whole lot of work to do.”

Rockets’ Head Coach Ray Reaves, a former Comets’ varsity girl’s basketball head coach, saw the game in virtually the same light as his Halifax counterpart.

“Halifax just made more plays than we did and not because we weren’t playing with any intensity,” said Reaves.

“We just didn’t make plays when we needed to.  Free throw-wise, especially in the second half (3-12), we missed more than we have been in the last few games.

“They (Halifax) played as well as they could in more stretches of the game than we did.

“Usually, the team that has more and longer spurts will win the game, and that’s what they did.

“They simply outplayed us, not necessarily out worked us because our girls worked their tails off.”

“There’s not much we can do about that but learn from our mistakes and move forward,” added Reaves, whose team faces Park View Tuesday in the first round of the annual HCHS Holiday Classic Basketball Tournament.

“We have a few days to practice and get ready for Park View, and if we’re fortunate enough to get to Wednesday and play these guys again, anything can happen.”

The Comets are still a work in progress, McCargo noted, who added his team met the challenge against Person on Wednesday.

“In tonight’s game there were a lot of mental mistakes,” he explained.

“We failed to run any of the offensive or defensive stuff we had worked on until right at the end of the game where we put bits and pieces together, enough to hold on for the win.

“We agreed after Brunswick (60-18 loss) there were a lot of things we needed to fix mentally and physically.

“We agreed all 14 players could play hard.  Especially on the defense end, they played hard in the man-to-man and denied the ball, created a lot of turnovers and created a lot of shot opportunities for us.

“I’m particularly proud of the way Ashley Hill battled the entire game.  She took a number of hard hits on the way to the basket, and she bounced right back up and converted some big free throws.

“Lexi Tucker handled the ball the entire game, and I’m just proud of the way they’re battling and leading the team for us right now.”