By Tim Chambers
CHURCH HILL—The Lady Longhorns flew high in the first half in their season opener at Volunteer that proved to be enough to earn them a win. Johnson County built a 37-8 halftime advantage then cruised their way to a 59-36 victory.
The Horns got five points from Emmy Miller and four more by Taylor Cox to grab an 11-2 lead after one-quarter of play. They didn’t shoot well during the first eight minutes but held a 13-4 rebounding edge.
Longhorns’ head coach Leon Tolley touched on his team’s play.
“We came out nervous like I thought we would and missed a lot of shots that we should have made and thrown it away because of pure nerves,” said Tolley. “We played well up until halftime, but we struggled after coming back out in the second half. We tried to work on some things we wanted to do down the road in the second half, but we didn’t do that very well. Overall it was a good effort, and we played hard, but we’ve got to do a better job finishing.”
Impressive 2nd quarter by the Longhorns
The Lady Longhorns would turn up the defense in the second quarter, plus they begin to make shots.
Taylor Parsons started the frame with a three-point play, and Sadie Stout got hot from the outside and began knocking down shots. She finished with 10 points in the quarter, including a pair of treys. Parson complimented her output with seven points and five rebounds in the period.
The Longhorns got a massive contribution from point guard Natalie Winters whose three-point play made it 34-8 with 19 seconds remaining. Here steal on the ensuing possession set up Stout who drained a three at the buzzer.
The Lady Longhorns led 37-8 at the half.
Ugly second half
The Lady Longhorns tried several different combinations in the second half only to be outplayed by the aggressive Falcons. They outscored Johnson County 23-21, but the damage had already been done. The first-half deficit was too much for them to overcome.
Cox had a good night scoring 15 points and adding five rebounds.
Stout recorded 14 points, five rebounds, and three steals. Parsons was the third Lady Longhorns in double figures with 11 points and ten rebounds. Miller grabbed a game high11 rebounds in addition to scoring seven points. Winters dished out six assists along with collecting three steals and scoring five points. Rhiannon Icenhour came off the bench to provide a pair of baskets in the paint.
Kennedy Knittel led the Falcons with 12 points.
The Lady Longhorns are now 1-0 on the season.
Johnson Co. 11 26 8 12 – 59
Volunteer 2 6 11 12 -36