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Second matchup brings disappointing loss for Lady Horns to Sullivan South

Having played a close match up at home earlier in the season, expectations were high for an exciting game between the Sullivan South Lady Rebels and the Johnson County Lady Longhorns at the Johnson City Honda Girls Basketball tournament at Daniel Boone last week. The spirit and fire of Johnson County’s first round against South was notably absent during the second. Although the game got off to a very good start with a basket by Brooke Brown and a three pointer from Kourtney Tolley, the game quickly took a nosedive that lasted all the way down to the final buzzer.
“Once again we had multiple players not show up and act like they wanted to play,” said a visibly frustrated Coach Todd Whittemore.   The Lady Rebels got their offense rolling with two back-to -back long range shots, and with a significant lack of rebounds from Johnson County, the game went from 5-0 to 5-15 in a steady three minute drive. South got one more basket in before the quarter was up, but in the last couple of minutes the Lady Longhorns did start to pick up on the defense to slow the game down. The damage was done and even a string of baskets by Brooke Brown, Brionna Reece, and Michala Cretsinger couldn’t make up for the lack of success early on.
By the half the game was at 15-35 and it was obvious that something drastic would need to be done for Johnson County to get back into the game. Kelsey Duperry managed a good offensive rebound to start off the third, but that small victory was quickly dampened by two consecutive three pointers from the Lady Rebels. With prospects growing dimmer, there was an increasing lag on the court that Whittemore quickly noted.
By the end of the third, South had hit 50 on the scoreboard and Johnson County was still trailing by more than 20 points at 28. With that much distance between them the Lady Rebels changed their strategy in the fourth to simply keeping the ball away from Johnson County’s control as much as possible. The strategy worked, with the Lady Longhorns gaining just eight points over the whole period, four of which came from junior Mary Taylor. A basket by Gianna Lay and a foul shot from Amanda Potter rounded out the evening to close 38-63.