Friday, January 30, 2015

SPORTS STORY >> Lady Panthers subdue Hurricanes

Leader sports editor

The Cabot basketball teams got another split in 7A/6A-East Conference play, this time at home as the Lady Panthers hammered Jonesboro 59-18 while the boys fell 63-39 to the No. 1 team in Class 6A.

The Lady Panthers put their game away in the first quarter with smothering defense. The Lady Hurricanes didn’t score the entire first quarter as Cabot built a 19-0 lead. Senior post player Alyssa Hamilton scored 10 points in the opening frame. She remained the game’s only double-digit scorer, finishing with 16 though playing just a few series in the second half. Neither team scored for nearly three minutes in the second quarter, when Jonesboro finally got on the board with a bucket by Joey Perry.

Cabot junior guard CoCo Calhoon then reeled off four-straight points and Hamilton added a bucket to make it 25-2 halfway through the second quarter. Jonesboro then scored five-straight, all by Perry, before Cabot closed the half with a 12-0 run and taking a 37-7 lead into intermission.

Ten different Cabot players got on the scoreboard. Calhoon finished with nine points while Anna Sullivan added seven. Hamilton also led the team with five rebounds. Guards Leighton Taylor and Danielle McWilliams had four steals each while Sullivan and Hamilton recorded three apiece. Taylor added five assists to her ledger. The Lady Panthers finished with 22 steals while forcing 29 Jonesboro turnovers. They also outrebounded the Hurricanes 30-19.

The Cabot ladies are now 16-5 overall and 4-2 in conference play while Jonesboro drops to 8-12 and 2-4.

Cabot completed its first run through the conference with last night’s home game against Searcy that finished after Leader deadlines. Much like Tuesday’s game, Friday’s matchup also means nothing concerning playoffs. The Lady Panthers went 1-2 against the league’s other three 7A teams. They will be off on Tuesday, and get back to league play next Friday with a crucial road game at North Little Rock. The Charging Lady Wildcats beat Cabot 44-40 in overtime on Jan. 9 at Panther Arena.

The Cabot boys continue to struggle without some key players. They finished 0-3 against the other 7A teams the first time through league play, and will likely need to win at least two of three in February to have a chance at the playoffs. The Panthers are 10-8 overall and 0-6 in conference as of Tuesday. The Jonesboro boys improved to 15-4 and 6-0.