NEWTON - Coming off an important win to open the season, the McDowell Lady Titans continued to carry that momentum on Friday evening, easily disposing of the Fred T Foard Lady Tigers 77-27 finishing off a strong first week of the basketball campaign for Coach Jennifer Kinninger’s team.
McDowell came out from the gate and asserted control of the game, scoring the first 18 points over a span of six-and-a-half minutes. That all spearheaded into a dominant 20-3 first quarter in which the Lady Titans' full-court trap created havoc, forcing the Lady Tigers into 16 turnovers in the first stanza alone. A lot of those coming near midcourt and leading to transition opportunities.
Naliyah Boyce started the flurry not on the defensive end but instead on the boards as she put McDowell (2-0) on the board with a rebound and put-back just over a minute in. Then after a steal in the backcourt, Dezi Williams found Alana Stephenson on the left wing for a 3-pointer at the 6:30 mark.
Five different Lady Titans scored in the 18-0 run, including seven points from Williams, four from Makenna Parkins and a basket in the paint from Daisy Rice. Foard was finally able to end the run with 1:26 left in the first when Paiden Dula made the front end of a two-shot foul, the other two points Foard mustered in the first was a jumper from Elayna Chavis in the final 15 seconds of the frame.
McDowell continued to add on to its advantage, scoring the first 14 points of the second quarter to attain its highest lead of the first half at 31 points. The Lady Tigers were able to gain a little traction late in the first half, getting back to within a 37-10 deficit at the half but those decisive first-half runs by McDowell salted the game away before they could get to the halftime break.
The Lady Titans, in the third, continued to produce at a high clip, outscoring Foard 23-8 in the third quarter. Megan Zullo scored in the paint off a Silese Carson assist with exactly two minutes left in the third to give McDowell a 40-point lead, kicking in a running clock for the final 10 minutes of play.
A total of 10 McDowell players scored in the blowout with three posting in double figures. Zullo turned out a 12-point, 13-rebound effort off the bench. The post player also had one steal and one assist. As a team the Lady Titans held a 34-25 rebounding advantage on the night.
Williams (9 steals, 3 assists, 2 rebounds) and Stephenson (6 steals, 5 assists, 2 rebounds) each had impressive floor games, scoring 11 points each.
Candace Cooper tallied nine points off the bench in her first game action of the season. Parkins (4 steals, 5 assists, 4 rebounds) and reserve guard Makaylah Chandler finished with eight points each. Rice finished with six points in the game with Carson (2 rebounds) and Boyce (4 rebounds, 1 assist) netting four points each.
Dula provided most of the offensive production for the Lady Tigers, finishing with 10 points. No other Foard player scored more than four points on the night.
This non-conference series over the past four seasons has been very one-sided in the Lady Titans' favor, winning by an average margin of 38 points.
McDowell returns home on Tuesday against R-S Central.
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