Lady Hilltoppers jump on Chase early
The R-S Central Lady Hilltoppers jumped on Chase 23-0 in the first six minute of their matchup Friday night as they cruised to a convincing 70-37 win.
"We thought if we could jump out early and get a lead we could hold it, and we did," Central head coach Darius Fuller said after the win. "I was very pleased at our pressure and defensive activity."
Tia Bristol set the pace early for Central (6-4. 2-0 SMAC) with four points in the first 15 seconds of the contest. After the Hilltoppers jumped out to an 8-0 lead, Chase head coach Todd Davis burned his first timeout with 6:50 left in the opening quarter.
"We just didn't execute," Davis said after the game.
Cental forced the Trojans (2-6, 0-2 SMAC) into countless turnovers that led into easy layups.
Fuller sent in mass substitutions at the 2-minute mark and Chase finally scored their first points of the game on an Eishla Caban jumper to make the score 23-2. Kendra Holcombe scored the next three points for the Chase on consecutive possessions.
Chase put three more on the board before the quarter ended in favor of Central, 27-5.
The Trojans opened the second quarter on 5-3 run highlighted by a Sidney Freeman 3-pointer.
After the quick start by chase in the first 90 seconds of the quarter, Central regained control with a mixture of starters and reserves.
Holcombe scored four more in the quarter but the Hilltoppers owned a 40-16 at halftime.
At the break the Hilltoppers led by 11 points from Te’ja Twitty, 10 from Alyssia Watkins and seven by Bristol.
Kaitlyn Smart got in the act for Chase with all nine Trojan points in the third but Central’s Twitty eight points in the third and their pressure defense kept them on top with a 60-25 lead after three quarters.
"[Smart] was just trying to hard," Davis said of his senior forward who caught fire after a slow first half. "Sometimes you just get over-anxious and you try to do too much too fast."
Chase controlled the fourth quarter against the Central reserves and shot out to a 12-0 run that closed the gap to 60-37 with just over three minutes remaining in the game.
Central closed out the game on a 10-0 run of their own for the 70-37 win.
Twitty led all scorers with 22 points and seven rebounds while Watkins added 14 points and nine steals. Bristol had a solid night with 10 points, six steals and five rebounds.
Smart led Chase with 15 points while Holcombe added 11 of her own.