Unforced turnovers do in Lady Panthers against Westover

Published 5:47 pm Saturday, November 19, 2022

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AMERICUS – After their season-opening loss to Randolph-Clay last Thursday at the Panther Den, the Sumter County Lady Panthers basketball team (SCHS) wanted to get rid of the bad taste in their mouths from that loss and rebound with a win over the Westover Lady Patriots the very next day. However, as they did in the loss to RC, unforced turnovers by the Lady Panthers proved to be costly against WHS and they resulted in a 56-35 defeat for SCHS on Friday, November 18 at the Panther Den on the SCHS campus.

A year ago, the Lady Panthers started out 0-2 and ended up going 23-7 and reached the Elite 8 of the GHSA state playoffs, but SCHS Head Coach Sherri Harris knows that for her club to duplicate that accomplishment this year, there must be drastic improvement in their ability to take care of the basketball and rebounding on the inside, among other things.

“We played somewhat better tonight,” Harris said. “Our guards have to come to work every night. Our post play was obsolete the entire night. We are beating ourselves with too many unforced turnovers. We will get better.”

Sophomore guard D’Eria Clark led SCHS in scoring with 17 points and drained four three-pointers. Clark scored almost half of the Lady Panthers’ points. Haley Moore, Lauren Harris and Madison Shelton each chipped in four points in the losing cause.

The Lady Patriots jumped out to a 10-0 lead to start the game and the Lady Panthers didn’t get on the scoreboard until Clark drilled the first of her four three-pointers. Throughout the first half, SCHS struggled with numerous turnovers and went into halftime trailing 27-15.

Sumter County senior forward Haley Moore scored four points for the Lady Panthers in the loss to Westover.
Photo by Ken Gustafson

The Lady Panthers were outscored 18-11 in the third quarter, with six of those points coming from 6 of 8 shooting from the foul line. However, even though they held the Lady Patriots (2-0) to nine points in the fourth quarter, the Lady Panthers themselves could only score nine points and they would go on to lose to WHS 56-35.

WHS junior forward Jada Landers led all scorers with 26 points and senior guard Lundyn Walker chipped in 15 in the winning cause.