Saturday, December 22, 2012

SPORT STORY >> Carlisle girls barely tested by PW ladies

Leader sportswriter

The Carlisle ladies were dominant from start to finish as they beat Palestine-Wheatley 44-8 in a 2A-6 Conference matchup on Thursday at Bison Arena.

As soon as the opening tipoff got underway, it was clear who the better team was on the floor. Callie Hillman, Faith Walker and Breanna Young led the Lady Bison to a 20-0 lead after a quarter of play.

The Lady Bison led 27-0 before the Lady Patriots put points on the board. With 3:57 to play in the first half, Kelsey Lamb hit a midrange jumper to give Palestine-Wheatley (1-9, 1-5) its first two points. Bethany Thweat scored again for the Lady Patriots with 49 seconds to go in the half, but Carlisle (8-4, 5-1) added two more baskets before the break to lead 31-4 at halftime.

“Everybody got a chance to play and everybody got some minutes,” said Lady Bison coach Jonathan Buffalo after the game. “I saw some good things out of those that don’t always get a chance to play. I saw where they improved from practice. We realize sometimes there’s going to be games like that. We just get in and do what we have to, and we get out without getting anybody hurt.”

With the game out of hand, the clock ran continuously throughout the second half. The Lady Bison outscored the Lady Patriots 11-0 in the third quarter to increase their lead to 42-4 by the start of the fourth.

The Carlisle reserves saw plenty of playing time in the second half, but could only manage two points in the final quarter.

Palestine-Wheatley scored four points in the fourth, including the final bucket of the game. Thweat hit a baseline jumper at the buzzer to set the final score.

“There were times we played good defense,” Buffalo said, “especially early in the first half. We switched out of the man and got in the zone. But we still have some things we need to work on. Defensively we need to work on moving our feet a little better. Offensively we need to shoot the ball from the outside a little bit better than we’ve been shooting it. It wasn’t a factor tonight, because we got every shot that we wanted to get.”

Buffalo wants to see his team make those adjustments in the annual Bison Holiday Hoops tournament, which will feature some stiff competition. The tournament tips off Dec. 27 and will last through Dec. 29.

“We have our tournament coming up on the 27th, playing Bradford in the first round of that,” Buffalo said. “Bradford’s a much-improved basketball team. They’re better than they have been the last couple of years. So there’s not going to be an easy game. I could look at (the bracket) and say there are eight teams in that tournament that’s going to have a chance to win it.”

Against Palestine-Wheatley, as the scoreboard indicated, Carlisle led every statistical category. The Lady Bison out-rebounded the Lady Patriots 39-15, and committed 14 turnovers to Palestine-Wheatley’s 27. Eight of Carlisle’s turnovers came in the final quarter with the starters on the bench.

Carlisle made 40 percent if its free throws, and 20 percent of its three pointers. Palestine-Wheatley was 0 for 12 from the three-point line, and had zero attempts at the free-throw line.

Hillman led the way for the Lady Bison with 12 points. Ten of Hillman’s points came in the first quarter. Young scored 11. Thweat scored four of Palestine-Wheatley’s eight points.

The Lady Bison’s game against Bradford in the opening round of the Bison Holiday Hoops tournament will tip off at 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 27.