Crisp County High’s recent hardwood struggles continued Tuesday night, but in their latest outings the Cougar teams at least managed to register one win.
Going up against an Albany High team they had beaten 44-32 in their season opener, coach Barrett Wilkes’ Lady Cougars eked out a 45-40 triumph in the re-match.
Taking on an Indians squad they had defeated 53-45 in their debut last November, coach Terry Smith’s Cougars fell flat on their face in absorbing a 67-52 loss.
With the split, Crisp was left with records of 9-5 overall, 6-2 in girls Region 1-AAAA play and the boys with a mark of 5-11, 4-4. Both will return to action at home on Friday vs. Worth County.
Lady Cougars 45, Squaws 40
Although they emerged triumphant for the first time in their last three starts, the Lady Cougars weren’t especially sharp in doing so.
Inconsistent in the early going, they found themselves in a 10-10 tie after a quarter and trailing 23-18 at intermission. Thanks to a 14-5 advantage in the third period, though, they were able to take a 32-28 lead into the final turn where they protected it with a 13-12 edge.
“After coming out flat to open the game, we picked up our pressure a little bit in the third quarter and in doing so forced some turnovers that got us back into the game,” Wilkes said.
“This was really the first time this year that we came out and produced a strong third quarter. As it turned out, that was the key toward us beating a much-improved Albany team that going in we had reason to believe we should have controlled but really didn’t.
“While we did do better tonight than we had of late, we’re still in need of a lot more improvement if we’re going to seriously challenge for a second straight region title.”
Nasheema Oliver netted 24 points, 10 of which came in the decisive third period, to lead all scorers in the contest. Keisha Jackson and Brianna Williams each bagged 10 for the Squaws.
Score by Quarters
Crisp County 10-8-14-13 — 45
Albany High 10-13-5-12 — 40
Crisp County (45) — Nisha Waters 2, Dee Dee Williams 6, Deletria Colson 4, Kayla Green 5, Nasheema Oliver 24, Daja Chambliss, Niqueria Jones, Miah Burks 4.
Team totals: field goals 19; free throws 7 of 15 (46.7%); fouls 10; 3-pointers — none; fouled out — none.
Albany (40) — Nakeidra Grevin 1, China Marcus 6, Keisha Jackson 10, Brianna Williams 10, Brianna Washington 8, Alondia Calhoun 3, Mercedes Allen 2.
Team totals: field goals 17; free throws 5 of 14 (37.1%); fouls 14; 3-pointers — Williams 1; fouled out — none.
Indians 67, Cougars 52
In bowing for a third time in the last four times they’ve taken the floor, the Cougars tied the season high they had set for points allowed in a game when they fell victim to Turner County by a point in mid-December.
Only in the final period of play did they hold a scoring advantage over the Indians. That 12-9 edge was far too little to erase earlier 17-15, 38-28 and 58-40 shortages.
“We have no heart, no guts, and that’s a reflection on me,” Smith said. “We just play. When we need a basket or a stop to maybe take control of things we don’t get it and we can’t blame it all on our youth.
“Albany is in the same boat with us as they, too, only return one starter from last season. The difference is they play hard. We, though, play soft. We still have time to turn thing around, however. The guys just have to believe they can do it.”
Javoris Cooks cashed in 20 points to lead the scoring for the Cougars and the game. The Indians got 17 points from Tyler Cheese, 13 from Malik Dungee-Ali and 11 from JaMarcus Nunally.
Score by Quarters
Crisp County 15-13-12-12 — 52
Albany High 17-21-20-9 — 67
Crisp County (52) ‚ Javoris Cooks 20, Davion Harvey 9, Primetime Hamilton 9, Shaquille West 4, Clement Burnam 4, Montre’ Hartage 3, Kerrion Harris 3, Taylor Walls, Eddie Morgan, Rashad Buckholts, Montel Richard.
Team totals: field goals 21; free throws 6 of 8 (75%); fouls 18; 3-pointers — Cooks 2, Harvey 1, Hartage 1; fouled out — none.
Albany (67) — Tyler Cheese 17, JaMarcus Nunally 11, Malik Dungee-Ali 13, Dezmond Newberry 9, Emanuel Byrd 6, Joshua Anderson 5, Jordan Young 2, Joe Stone 2.
Team totals: field goals 28; free throws 5 of 10 (50%); fouls 13; 3-pointers — Nunally 3, Dungee-Ali 1, Anderson 1, Cheese 1; fouled out — none.