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Lady Patriots hit 10 3s, drop Lady Indians

Douglas Fritz • Jan 13, 2019 at 12:10 AM

KINGSPORT — The nonconference girls basketball game was a stark contrast of a team that could rain the 3-ball against a team that was unable to consistently threaten from deep.

Jefferson County knocked down 10 3-pointers, getting treys from five players, and the Lady Patriots held off Dobyns-Bennett 54-49 on Saturday afternoon at the Buck Van Huss Dome.

Jefferson County outscored D-B 30-9 from 3-point range.

“They shot it well, and that’s what Jeff County can do,” said Lady Indians coach Bill Francis. “That’s what they did in the region last year. I told the kids they did not shoot it well the first time we played, and I will guarantee they will not come in and shoot it that way again.”

Courtney Whitson did her level best to keep D-B in the hunt. She finished with 30 points and was at times unstoppable despite multiplayer defensive attention.

The Lady Patriots forced D-B into a sea of first-quarter turnovers, jumping out to a 12-2 lead and cruising into the second quarter with a 19-6 advantage.

However, the Tribe started finding Whitson in their halfcourt offense and cut the deficit to 26-22 at the break.

“They punched us flat square in the mouth, and we could not dig out of that hole,” Francis said. “I thought we played solid the next three quarters. We did what we needed to do. We moved Courtney inside and got stops when we needed stops. We could just not get any closer than three points.”

The Lady Patriots went up 48-37 early in the fourth quarter before D-B closed to three points, 50-47, with 45 seconds remaining and again with 26 seconds left, 52-49. But the Lady Patriots made their free throws to secure the win.

“I like the way our kids competed down the stretch,” Francis said. “Our kids battled.”

Alexa Gramann led Jefferson County with 14 points, Cayla Smith added 13 and Makayla Alvey had 10. Those three players had seven of the Patriots’ treys.

“We’re both capable of competing for the region,” Francis noted before adding jokingly: “The only thing I can say is it’s tough to beat a team three times, and we got that out of the way.”

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