45th District: Lincoln girls roll Danville 72-40

Published 1:40 pm Thursday, January 11, 2018

DANVILLE — Emma King poured in a game-high 21 points and Kaitlynn Wilks added 18 points as the Lincoln County girls crushed host Danville 72-40 in the 45th District opener for both teams.

“District. On the road. It’s a win. That’s big,” Lincoln coach Cassandra McWhorter said. “When you can start district with a win, it doesn’t matter who you’re playing, that’s a good start.”

The teams were locked in a close contest the first quarter, but Lincoln (11-3) doubled up Danville’s scoring in the second quarter, 20-10, to post a 36-22 lead at the half.

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Danville (5-9) never threatened the Lincoln lead as the Lady Patriots outscored the Lady Admirals 36-18 in the second half to earn the lopsided victory.

“I tried to remind the girls in the first quarter to stay focued,” said McWhorter. “We had a lot of our games early in the season that we won by a lot. That first quarter, it was tight. So I told them just to keep in their minds not to get frustrated with each other or not to get anxious that we’re not ahead a lot already. I tell them all the time, ‘It’s a marathon. It’s not a sprint. You’ve got to play all four quarters. And if we do what we’re supposed to do all four quarters, we’ll be fine.’ And that’s what they did tonight.”

Danville, which was playing without leading scorer Ivy Turner, held the early lead, with Ahyana Barnett converting on a three-point play to open the game and Lara Akers adding a free throw toss for a 4-1 edge in the first quarter. The lead would be shortlived, however, as Lincoln answered with a 13-3 run to go on top to stay.

Wilks sank a free throw to open the Lady Pat run then, after Wilks missed the second shot, King got the rebound and putback to even the game at 4-all. Hailee Barnes gave Lincoln its first lead with 5:22 remaining in the first, draining a 3-pointer after a Danville turnover. King followed with a bucket off a turnover, Trinity Shearer nailed her own 3 and Wilks capped the run with a bucket in the paint for a 14-7 advantage.

Kirby Harrison-Alcorn stopped the bleeding with a 3-point goal for Danville and Tyliah Bradshaw folllowed with a shot inside to cut the Lincoln lead to 14-12. The margin would be at four, 16-12, at the end of the period, though, with Lincoln’s Lydia Rice scoring off a Shearer assist.

Lincoln, which shot 46 percent from the field overall (32-for-70), went 6-for-18 in the first quarter, missing several open shots and layups.

“It seemed like we missed a lot under the rim, some easy shots that could have extended it early,” said McWhorter.

The Lady Patriots got a few more shots to fall in the second quarter, outscoring the Lady Admirals 20-10 to extend their lead to 36-22 at the break. Wilks pumped in eight of Lincoln’s 20 points, King and Anna Lane each had four points and Shearer and Boyle added a bucket apiece. Over half of Danville’s second-quarter points came from long range with Lara and Jenna Akers, who led the Lady Ads with nine points apiece, each hitting a 3.

Lincoln blew the game wide open in the third quarter, holding Danville scoreless for a span of almost 5 minutes, 30 seconds. Meanwhile, the Lady Pat offense had a hot hand, knocking down 16 straight points. Zaria Napier, who ignited the 16-0 run with a field goal, and King knocked back six points apiece in the run and Wilks added four points to make it a 52-24 ballgame.

Lincoln, which took a 54-30 lead into the fourth quarter, outscored Danville 36-18 in the second half, closing on an 18-10 run in the final frame.

“It didn’t look good when we were missing those easy shots early, but the big thing was that we were pounding the offensive boards and ultimately we finally started moving the ball and passing the ball the way we needed to, especially the third quarter right after halftime and that really showed the team chemistry. And we pushed our lead up,” McWhorter said. We’ve got them outsized. You don’t want to miss those point-blank shots, but at least we weren’t giving up on it and going the other way. We were staying with the play. We were crashing the offensive boards. And we were putting the ball in the hole.”

Lincoln got a commanding 43-21 win on the glass, with 15 offensive boards to Danville’s four.

Danville shot 26 percent from the field, going 12-for-47. At the line, the Lady Admirals were 11-for-15 while the Lady Patriots were 5-for-9.

at Danville

Lincoln 16 20 18 18 – 72
Danville 12 10 8 10 – 40

LINCOLN (11-3) – Emma King 21, Kaitlynn Wilks 18, Maddy Boyle 2, Trinity Shearer 5, Zaria Napier 6, Anna Lane 4, Courtney Snow 2, Hailee Barnes 3, Lydia Rice 2, Ally Lynn 4, Haleigh Releford 2, Savannah Robbins 3.
DANVILLE (5-9) – Lara Akers 9, Jenna Akers 9, Amber Wheat 1, Ahyana Barnett 5, Kirby Harrison Alcorn 3, Tyliah Bradshaw 4, Desiree Tandy 4, Carolina Gonzalez 5.