Dateline – Buford, Ga.: The Lady Cougars took to the road to renew their budding rivalry with the Stallions of Sugar Hill Christian Academy.  In last season’s inaugural action against the Stallions, the teams split their series: with TCS edging out an overtime win at home, and with Sugar Hill holding service on their home court.

In the first quarter, Sugar Hill came out determined to conduct a replay of the shootout at the O.K. Corral, with the home towners playing the role of the Wyatt Earp and Doc Holiday.  Ambushing the visitors with an aggressive pressing defense, SHCA amassed early turnovers, while blazing away on offensive.  After weathering the initial flurry, the Lady Cougars found themselves at the short end of a 17 – 2 score.  Sophomore Alyssa Briggs and senior Anika Helm provided the only offensive reprieve, as they both earned trips to the foul line.

In the second period of play, momentum switched as the Lady Cougars tightened up on turnovers, and showed greater discipline on the defensive end. Both teams ground out a total of eight points apiece.  For Cottage, Briggs tossed in six points on a mix of drives and jumpers, while junior Celeste Jeoffroy banked home a shot assisted by Briggs.

After experiencing an evenly played second quarter, the game surged in a completely different direction as Sugar Hill threw a blanket over the TCS attack, limiting their guests to just two points tallied by Briggs.  Riding a hot shooting Faith W., who kicked in eight of her game high 16 points in the stanza, the Stallions chalked up 12 total points.  Even worse news confronted Cottage, Helms received her fifth personal foul after getting whistled up for an illegal screen.  With only five eligible players, it appeared that the final quarter might prove to be a complete stampede for Sugar Hill.

However, in the spirit of such an up and down game, TCS responded by outscoring their rivals by four points.  Jeoffroy banked home another shot from the low post, Briggs connected on two field goals and a free throw, while junior Ana Mills measured up a high arcing “three” that tickled nothing but net on the way down.

When the dust settled, Sugar Hill came away with a 43 – 24 victory.  The Lady Cougars continue their mini road trip their first ever match up against GISA member Christo Rey Tuesday evening.

GAME NOTES:

Finley Love served as the sole reserve in this Friday match.  Although her two jumpers did not fall, Love collected her obligatory offensive rebound, and deflected a pass.

The frontcourt had their hands full in matching up against a tall (VERY tall), versatile, and talented crew of centers and forwards.  Ana Mills nabbed 8 boards (4 offensive), the three pointer, and 1 steal. Celeste Jeoffroy powered in four points, while grabbing 6 rebound (2 from the offensive glass).  She also excelled in transition defense and gathered 3 steals.   Anika Helm contributed identical rebounding numbers, while also getting a steal and a blocked shot.

The starting backcourt also made their presence felt.  Lillian Travis ended up in the swingman role, especially after the DQ banished teammate Helm to the bench.  Travis recorded her first assist of the season, pocked a ball loose for a steal, and chased down an offensive rebound.  Alyssa Briggs carried the scoring load, grinding out a season high 15 points in the face of determined defense.  Additionally Briggs distributed the ball for two assists, claimed 2 steals, and plucked 5 rebounds (3 offensive) to round out the scoresheet.