Lady Eagles fly past Gaston

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By Chris McCarthy/Editor

Hannah Evans scored 15 of her game-high 18 points in the second half as Hokes Bluff posted a 49-30 victory over Gaston in girls basketball on Tuesday (Dec. 2) at GHS.

With the Lady Eagles trailing 23-22 midway through the third quarter, Evans’ 3-point basket sparked a 14-2 run that gave the visitors a double-digit advantage for the remainder of the game.

Sidney Ball scored all seven of her points in the third frame as Hokes Bluff took a 36-24 lead. The Lady Bulldogs managed just one field goal over the final 10 minutes. 

Hokes Bluff shot 70 percent (14-for-20) from the free throw line, with Evans going 7-for-8 at the charity stripe in the second half.

Tylynn Register chipped in seven points and 12 rebounds for the Lady Eagles, while Maddy Jenkins distributed six assists.

“I thought we played better defense in the second half and got our offense going a little bit,” said Hokes Bluff head coach Jason Shields. “Gaston did a good job on defense like they always do, and we had to go back to being guard-oriented instead of being post-oriented. It took us a half to get used to what we had to do.” 

Abbie Elrod paced Gaston with 10 points, followed by Kentara Blackwell with nine.

The Lady Eagles ran out to an early seven-point lead before Elrod’s buzzer-beating trey pulled the hosts within 10-7 after one period.

Gaston grabbed the lead in the second quarter with an 8-0 run, but Amanda Noah scored eight of Hokes Bluff’s nine second-quarter points to help the Lady Eagles go into halftime ahead by 19-18.

Blackwell’s 3-pointer at 5:55 of the third provided Gaston with its final lead of the night before Evans and company took control down the stretch. 

“We played the first half like I wanted them to play,” said Gaston head coach Tonya Bogle. “We wanted to stay in the game in the second half, but we dig ourselves a hole in the third quarter and lost focus. We got tired, and when that happens it’s easier to foul. We got [Hokes Bluff] to the free throw line, and that added up real quick. But I’d play them every night if I could, because they’re the type of team that will make you better.” 

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