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Early deficit leads to loss for Lady Lions

An early deficit proved too much to overcome, and the Halifax County Middle School girl’s basketball team ultimately lost 28-25 Monday at home to Bonner Middle School of Danville. Ghanija Gooden led Halifax County (9-4) with 10 points, and Malasia Boyd added seven points, including two three-pointers, one in the third quarter that brought the Lions as close as 23-21 with a quarter remaining.

Shadajah Davis and Alasha Edmondson each added three points and A’Kiya Guill two points for Halifax County, which never led after falling behind 4-0 in the early going.

With the conference season already over and with his team holding a two seed in the upcoming Southside Middle School Conference Tournament, Lions’ coach James Smith used the non-conference game to experiment with different player rotations and different offensive and defensive sets.

“I liked our effort, but we fell behind early and just couldn’t catch up,” Smith noted.

“We had a good rally but just couldn’t make a play late to win the game.”

Halifax County trailed 14-7 after one quarter to a hot-shooting Bonner team that canned two three-pointers in the opening period, and the Lions trailed by as much as 18-7 in the second quarter before facing a 23-14 deficit at halftime.

Edmondson and Davis each hit a basket and Boyd hit her second three-pointer of the game in the third quarter as the Lions went on a 7-0 run to cut their deficit to 23-21 with a quarter remaining.

A Gooden basket with 49 seconds remaining brought the Lions to within 27-25, and Bonner added a free throw for a three-point margin, but Halifax could not get a shot off with a chance to tie the game in the closing seconds.

Another poor night at the foul line helped derail the Lions’ comeback, with Halifax County connecting on only five of 20 free throw attempts, while Bonner went 4-6 at the charity stripe.

The Lions were only 2-12 at the foul line in the fourth quarter.