Tuesday, December 20, 2011

SPORTS >> Cabot girls blow away Springdale

Leader sports editor

The Cabot Lady Panthers put together another dominant performance Friday at Panther Arena, hammering 7A West visitor Springdale 74-43 to improve to 7-2 on the season.

The Lady Panthers’ relentless pressure forced 26 Springdale turnovers. Many of the turnovers turned into easy transition baskets. When not running the floor, Cabot’s halfcourt offense created several other easy shots.

The Lady Panthers hit 53 percent of its field goals, making 31 shots in 58 attempts. Their defense forced Springdale into a 16 for 43 shooting performance.

“We’re continuing to improve,” Cabot coach Carla Crowder said. “We played really hard tonight and as we continue to improve, we’ll getback better after they’ve broke the press and not give up some of the easy baskets we gave up tonight. I thought we played well but I always see things we could do better.”

The duo of Laci Boyett and Elliot Taylor dominated the first quarter of play. Boyett and Taylor scored eight points each for 16 of the team’s 25 points in the opening frame. Micah Odom came off the bench to add a spark as well. She got two steals and two layups after entering the game as the Lady Panthers built a 25-15 lead.

When in its half court man defense, Cabot put 6-foot, 1-inch senior Melissa Wolff on Springdale’s freshman point guard Shya Taylor, making things no easier even on the occasions that the Lady Bulldogs broke Cabot’s full-court pressure.

Springdale committed 10 turnovers in the first quarter and seven more in the second.

Holding a 46-22 lead, Crowder sent just two starters onto the floor to start the second half. The Cabot reserves weren’t quite as dominant, but still extended the lead to 65-38 by the end of the period. At the very beginning of the fourth quarter, Sara Fowler was fouled while hitting a basket. She made the free throw to make it 68-38, invoking the mercy rule for the final 7:44 of the game.

Taylor led all scorers with 16 points while her fellow post players Sydney Wacker and Wolff each scored 12. Wacker and Wolff also grabbed seven rebounds. Wolff also had four steals while Wacker dished out four assists. The Lady Panthers had 20 total assists in the game. Wolff, Jaylin Bridges and #2 each dished out three.

Springdale post player Bailey Swaringen came off the bench to lead Springdale with 10 points.

The win was the sixth-straight for Cabot after going 1-2 in the season-opening tournament at Hall in late November. The Lady Panthers will take part in the Mansfield Rotary Invitational Tournament in Mansfield, Texas beginning Dec. 27. Cabot will take on Lamar, Texas at 1:15 p.m. Tuesday.

Their next home game will be Jan. 3 against Greene County Tech.