Holiday tournaments can be tricky for high school basketball teams, and that was the case for the Scotland County girls who appeared a little rusty Saturday afternoon in the opening round of the Highland Tournament. After several days off for Christmas, the Lady Tigers stumbled out of the gates for the 1 p.m. tip off versus Knox County, falling to the Eagles 56-42.
SCR-I go off to a decent start, as field goals by Khloe Hamlin and Kaylyn Anders had the score knotted at 4-4 in the early minutes.
But the Lady Tigers went scoreless over the next five minutes allowing Knox County to pull ahead 11-4 and force a timeout at the 1:32 mark.
Katie Feeney scored on a drive to the basket and Micah Cooley scored off the dribble but the Lady Eagles still led 14-8.
The offensive struggles worsened in the second period, as the lone field goal of the eight minute stretch for SCR-I came on an offensive rebound by Anders, allowing Knox County to blow the game open with a 32-12 lead at the intermission.
Switching ends of the court didn’t help SCR-I’s shooting, as the Lady Tigers failed to convert a single field goal in the third period. Scotland County managed just seven free throws over the stretch, which was enough to cut the lead to 38-19.
Scotland County looked like a different team in the fourth period. Hannah Feeney sank a three-pointer to start an SCR-I barrage from behind the arc. Senior Madie Bondurant connected on a trio of three-pointers, including a shot from downtown Ewing, which forced a Knox County timeout with 1:36 left to play and the Knox County lead nearing single digits for the first time since the first half.
Khloe Hamlin and Aayla Humphrey also connected on three-pointers, but the rally came up short as Knox County held on for the 56-42 victory.
Scotland County fell to 5-4 on the season with the loss. Bondurant led the team in scoring with 11 points and Hamlin added eight. Riley Strange led Knox County (9-3) in scoring with 19 points and Sidney Miller finished with 16.
The Lady Tigers will play Friday in the consolation game.