Lady Patriots pick up first area win

Published 11:00 pm Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Pike Liberal Arts Lady Patriots picked up their first region win of the season with a 45-37 win over the Macon-East Lady Knights.

It was a slow start to the night for the Lady Patriots who fell behind 8-1 less than two minutes in to the first quarter. Pike closed the quarter on a 10-4 run on the strength of six points from guard Katie Ward.

The two teams traded buckets in the second quarter, and the Lady Patriots struggled to solve the Lady Knights’ press. Ward and Marlee Tunstill combined for 12 of the Lady Pats’ 13 points in the quarter, but Pike still trailed 23-25 at halftime.

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Pike dialed up the defensive intensity after the break and held the Lady Knights to two points in the third quarter. An eight point third quarter from Ellie Barron saw the Lady Pats take a 36-27 lead heading in to the game’s final frame.

The Lady Knights started the fourth quarter with an 8-1 run to cut the Lady Patriots’ lead to two points, but Pike controlled the remainder of the game and held on for a 45-37 win after scoring eight of the game’s final 10 points.

Marlee Tunstill led the way for the Patriots with 17 points. Ward added 12 points, and Barron scored 11 in the win.

PLAS head coach Craig Kennedy said winning the game was something special. “One of the big things about coaching two teams is that you are very rarely happy,” Kennedy said. “One team will when and the other team will lose. To have both teams beat Macon-East tonight makes me so happy. They have been a thorn in our side for a long time.”

Kennedy said the Patriots’ run in the second half was the result of a tough mentality. “I challenged the kids to play to the best of their ability during halftime,” Kennedy said. “After Friday, there are no more home games for us. It’s up to the girls to decide how they want to be remembered. Tonight, they decided they want to be remembered as a team that worked hard.”

The Patriots will take on the Hooper Academy Colts Friday night for the team’s final home game. “Hooper is going to come out physical,” Kennedy said. “We’re a team that likes to hit the floor running and attack the basket. Hooper will try to take that away from us.

Boys: Pike Liberal Arts 50, Macon-East 58

Basketball is a game of runs, and, unfortunately for the Pike Liberal Arts Patriots, the Macon-East Knights ended their game against the Patriots on an 11-3 run to steal a win.

Pike took a held a 37-30 lead in the third quarter, but the Knights scored the game’s next 15 points to take a 45-37 lead midway through the fourth quarter.

Brian Adams paced the way for the Patriots with 14 points. Myles Loving had 13, while Chandler Avant added 12.

Pike next hosts Hooper Academy on Friday.