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Home Sports Scott Lady Highlanders struggle for a second straight game, as Tornadoes roll to...

Lady Highlanders struggle for a second straight game, as Tornadoes roll to district win

Scott High senior Julia Butts sizes up the defense during the Lady Highlanders’ loss at Alcoa on Friday, Jan. 29, 2021 | Matt Boyatt/IH

ALCOA — Last week was a week Scott High will remember for quite some time. This week was a week that the Lady Highlanders would just as soon forget.

After a second half meltdown at Sevier County on Monday, Scott High could not get anything going against Alcoa on Friday, falling to District 4-AA’s top team by a 58-18 finale that was every bit as lopsided as the final score indicated.

The Highlanders didn’t muster much offense at Sevier County four days earlier, but had played well enough defensively that they were still in it at halftime, before the Smoky Bears outscored them 48-11 in the second half to win by 44 points.

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On Friday, the offense still wasn’t there … but Alcoa didn’t wait until the second half to make Scott High pay.

Incredibly, the Lady Highlanders did not hit a single field goal in the first half. They were held scoreless until the final minute of the first quarter, when sophomore Annalyne Woodward stepped to the line and hit a pair of free throws. After that, they didn’t score again until there were nine-tenths of a second remaining in the first half, when junior Bryanna Doran hit one of two free throws.

By that time, Alcoa had built a 26-3 lead.

Scott High’s first field goal didn’t come until the 6:48 mark of the third quarter, when Julia Butts hit a pull-up jumper from the baseline. She would hit a second shot in the third quarter, as well, but those were the only points the Lady Highlanders would score that period besides a Julie Lewallen free throw.

Meanwhile, Alcoa went on a tear in the third, scoring 26 points to turn the 23-point halftime lead into a 52-8 advantage as the final period began.

Prior to this week, Scott High hadn’t been overwhelmed in a game since an early January trip to Cosby, where the Lady Highlanders played their first game in a month due to a coronavirus layoff and was every bit as rusty as the 30-point final margin indicated.

The 30 points scored at Cosby were the fewest Scott High scored in a single game this season, entering the week. But in Monday’s game, Sevier County limited Scott High to 23 points. Friday’s game was even worse.

The Lady Highlanders led by as much as seven points in the first quarter the last time they faced Alcoa, before losing by 20. But in Friday’s rematch, the Tornadoes — who had already won district games by 28 points and by 36 points earlier in the week, against Kingston and Austin-East — limited Scott to just 12% shooting while forcing 20 turnovers.

If there was a bright spot, it was that the Lady Highlanders committed only five fouls the entire game. The Tornadoes shot only four free throws. But Jake Wright might’ve traded some fouls for a little extra defensive intensity; Alcoa was able to knock down eight 3-pointers on a night where the Tornadoes did not shoot the ball particularly well.

But Scott High’s real troubles came on the offensive end. Sophomore Jalin Young was the leading scorer, with six fourth quarter points. Butts was the only other player to score more than one field goal, and the Lady Highlanders had just five field goals as a team.

SCOTT (18): Young 6, Butts 4, Woodward 3, K. Jeffers 2, Lewallen 1, Lewis 1, Doran 1.

ALCOA (58): Wilburn 21, Haworth 14, Bremer 14, Albright 3, McNear 2, Sammy 2, Thompson 2.

Independent Herald
Contact the Independent Herald at newsroom@ihoneida.com. Follow us on Twitter, @indherald.
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