Lady Hounds grind out opening-round win

By Hannah King - Sports Writer

The Lady Greyhounds of North Surry hosted and defeated the West Caldwell Warriors in the first round of the NCHSAA 2A state basketball playoffs by a score of 49-25 in Ron King Gymnasium.

The first half of Tuesday’s game was low-scoring, with the Lady Hounds clinging to a one-point lead at the break.

After the first quarter, North Surry held the lead, but only by one point. The visitors put on a late-quarter show after scoring its first point after half over the quarter had already gone by. Following what had been an 7-0 North Surry run, West’s Annie Bean made the first Warrior basket at the 3:40 mark and then sparked on a 6-0 run against the Lady Hounds.

In the second quarter, the Greyhounds held the Warriors to single-digit scoring again. During the first minute, Maggie Hawks scored her first basket after taking a feed from Sutphin. Mikaela Johnson went 3-for-4 at the free-throw line, and scored the next five North Surry points. Both squads held one another scoreless for nearly the next two minutes. Tiana Shuff clinched two points from the free-throw line. There were 20 seconds left before the break when Taylor Duncan beat out the Lady Warriors’ Layla Patterson at midcourt and was then fouled on her way to the hoop. Duncan chipped in two from the line.

Hawks opened the third quarter up with a spin move and two from the free-throw line. She claimed the first four Greyhound points during the first minute and a half of the quarter. West Caldwell coach Josh Reeves signaled for a timeout as the Lady Hounds possessed a 10-point lead early into the third quarter. After a lull in the action, North Surry posted a 9-0 run. At the end of three quarters of play, North Surry led by as many as 18 at the conclusion of the quarter after scoring 14 in the period. Hawks totaled eight points to lead the Lady Hounds in the third quarter.

In the final quarter, North held the Lady Wildcats to another single-digit scoring quarter. Martha Holt opened the last quarter up by posting the first four points. Free throws from Shuff and Sutphin gave the Lady Hounds a 20-point lead with five and a half minutes left in the game. Both teams held one another scoreless during the next two minutes, but then Sutphin posted another three points. North Surry registered another five points during the final two minutes of the ball game as Johnson and West closed out with another two points, and Arin Bunker one from the free-throw line.

“I thought we were solid in the first half defensively. Offensively, we were impatient and in a hurry. We had a hard time making some shots that we should have made. We got a little bit better in the second half, but if we want to advance past Thursday we have got to be better at it,” said North Surry coach Shane Slate.

Johnson led North Surry with 14 points, while Hawks and Sutphin posted 10 each.

Duncan and Sutphin logged three assists each. Outside of scoring, Johnson also led the team with eight total rebounds.

North Surry will host Rutherfordton-Spindale Central on Thursday in the the second round of the playoffs.

By Hannah King

Sports Writer

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