Tuesday, December 09, 2014

SPORTS STORY >> Carlisle girls get two 2A-6 victories

Leader sportswriter

The Carlisle Lady Bison played their first two conference games of the season last week, and won both games. On Dec. 2, the Carlisle girls went on the road and hammered Palestine-Wheatley 64-36, and on Friday, the Lady Bison got another double-digit 2A-6 win, beating Brinkley 58-35 at Bison Arena.

Carlisle’s press defense was highly effective in both games. Against Palestine-Wheatley, the Lady Bison got a total of 25 steals, which led to a lot of easy points in transition for Carlisle.

“We pressed them,” said Carlisle coach Jonathan Buffalo. “We put a lot of pressure on them. They turned the ball over to us and that led to a lot of easy baskets for everybody.

“Everybody did a real good job of moving their feet, cutting in through passing lanes and doing what we want to do, which is speed the game up. Like I told them, though, first conference game, going out on the road, any win’s a good win when you’re in conference.”

The Lady Bison led the Lady Patriots 20-8 at the end of the first quarter, and pushed their lead to 15 at halftime, leading 33-18. By the end of the third quarter, Carlisle held a comfortable 49-30 lead, and the Lady Bison furthered their lead in the final eight minutes.

Freshman standout Kylie Warren led the Lady Bison with 21 points against PW. She also had nine rebounds and five steals. Elex McClain also scored in double figures with 12. Sophomore guard Kayla Golleher had seven points. Nicquira Burnett had six.

Peyton Hitchings and Nikita Harper each scored five points, and teammates Molli Weems and Ashley Harbison had three points each.

Friday’s game at Bison Arena was close after a quarter of play. The Lady Bison led the Lady Tigers 13-12 at the start of the second quarter, but pushed their lead to seven at halftime, leading 28-21.

Warren scored 11 of her game-high 27 points in the third quarter to lead Carlisle to a 46-32 lead at the start of the fourth, and in the final quarter of play, the Lady Bison gave up just three points while adding 12 points to their side of the scoreboard to get the 23-point win over Brinkley.

Warren recorded a double-double against the Lady Tigers. In addition to her 27 points, she also had 13 rebounds.

“She’s a good player,” Buffalo said of his starting freshman. “She’s playing real well. We talk about not wanting to force things, but she’s done a good job and everybody’s done a good job. I’m getting contributions from everybody.”

Like Warren, McClain also scored in double figures against the Lady Tigers. She had 13 points. Hitchings had six. Golleher added four, and Weems and Burnett had three points apiece.

“Brinkley, they came out and hit some shots,” Buffalo said. “They were playing hard. I didn’t think in the beginning that we did a real good job of matching their intensity, but we decided to step up and play a little bit.

“We were able to push the lead near 20 in the third quarter. So we did a good job. When we pressed them, we were able to turn them over some, which helped us. We’re 2-0 in the conference. You can’t ask for a better start in the conference.

“We didn’t get a whole lot of nonconference games. We only got two. So we’re off to a good start. We’re playing eight, nine, 10 girls right now – rotating them in. We’re doing some good things and everybody’s contributing. So I’m pleased with where we’re at right now.”

The Lady Bison also played Saturday night in the Conway Christian tournament, but lost 54-41 to the tournament hosts. Warren was the only Lady Bison to score in double figures in that game. She had 21 points.

Carlisle continued conference play last night at Augusta after deadlines. The Lady Bison (3-2, 2-0) will play a nonconference game at 3:30 today against Sacred Heart in the consolation round of the Conway Christian tournament.

Carlisle will resume conference play Friday at Clarendon, and the Bison and Lady Bison will play their final home game of 2014 on Monday against 2A-6 rival Des Arc. Friday’s and Monday’s games tip off at 6 p.m. with the girls taking the floor first.