|Endings satisfy both UC teams |
|Posted: Wednesday, December 31, 2008 5:54 pm |
Redemption was sweet for the Union City girls on Tuesday afternoon.
Union City’s Shenisha Huff puts the pressure on during the Lady Twisters’ win on Tuesday afternoon.
Simply getting a win was satisfying for the Tornado boys.
Less than 24 hours after the locals suffered a tough loss to undefeated Westview at the 44th annual Martin Lions Club Christmas Tournament, the Lady Twisters redeemed themselves with a convincing 59-36 triumph over Madison Academic.
At the Murray Bank Holiday Classic, the Union City boys kept the Christmas season from being a total wash after two losses with a 79-38 rout of Joppa (Ill.) in the seventh-place game.
Both UC clubs will now take an abbreviated break before beginning the second halves of their respective seasons next Tuesday night with a District 14A twinbill at Trenton.
Throughout Tuesday’s victory, the UC girls — who earned third place in the long-running Martin event with their win — pestered the Lady Mustangs’ offense, forcing a total of 30 turnovers.
Off those turnovers, Union City was able to put in 28 points.
“Our defensive pressure was outstanding in the first half and that may have been our best half of the season in that aspect of the game,” UC girls’ coach Jeff Chandler said afterward. “We didn’t do a great job offensively, but we shot a decent enough percentage to get and keep the lead.”
The Lady Twisters took the lead for good with 6:35 remaining in the first quarter.
With Union City down 2-0 after an early basket by Morgan Faulkner, Labrica Ward sank one of two free throws and she then gave the locals the advantage once and for all when she made the team’s first field goal of the afternoon.
For the remainder of the first period, the Lady Tornadoes (11-5) allowed just a pair of free throws as they outscored MA 14-4 overall in the frame.
The second quarter was much of the same with Union City besting Madison Academic 11-6. At halftime, the Lady Tornadoes were up comfortably 25-10.
The Lady Mustangs cut into UC’s lead throughout the third quarter, eventually pulling to within eight points at the buzzer.
However, Ward swished the nylons early in the fourth period for a deuce and Whitney Smith then followed with a trifecta to thwart the rally attempt of Madison Academic.
All totaled, Union City drubbed its Madison County opposition 24-9 during the final frame.
The Lady Twisters were up by as many as 24 points (59-35) after a Doreal Strayhorn charity toss late in the game.
Ward finished with a team-high 16 points, while Marcetta Ross added 13 — eight of which she amassed in the first half — and Shenisha Huff was a point shy of double digits with nine markers.
Faulkner was the only Lady Mustang in double digits as she accounted for a game-high 18 points.
Both Ward and Ross were named to the event’s All-Tournament team.
UC 79, Joppa 38 (B)
The Tornadoes finally discovered their shooting touch, making nine 3-pointers and 24-of-36 (67 percent) of their 2-point field goals in romping over their Illinois opponent.
Union City (8-6) was in control from start to finish, leading 19-12 after one quarter, 47-26 at halftime and 67-30 with three periods in the book.
Antonio Cox tallied 17 points and was recognized as the player of the game by tournament officials in pacing the victors.
Rakim Gaston and Ryne Simpson each chipped in with 12 markers for the Twisters.
“Even though we went 1-2 in the tournament, I felt like we played better defense in those three games than we have all season,” UC head coach Shane Sisco said of his troops. “Our problem is well-documented, and it’s that we just haven’t been able to score.
“The keys for us in the second half of the season are to take care of the basketball and make shots. If we do, we’ll be all right. If we don’t, we’re going to struggle big-time.”