Elizabethton was tabbed as the No. 1 in the Tennessee AP Class AA girls’ basketball poll and showed why with a 65-30 defeat over non-conference rival Hampton High Monday night on their home court.
The Lady Cyclones extended their record to 14-0 on the season and were led in scoring behind 15 points from junior guards Kayla and Kelci Marosites. Megan Pietrowski added 13 points apiece but it was eight boards from the senior and battling in the paint that eliminated a threat from the Lady Bulldogs in the paint, Elizabethton head coach Len Dugger said, and her progressive effort down low as the game went on.
Hampton (8-7) received 12 points from sophomore Alexus Grubbs and seven points from Shyanne Tuelle in a contest where the squad saw the return of senior guard Alexis Bowers – who is near the 1,000th point-marker for her career.
It was an important return, Lady Bulldog head coach Bud Hazelwood said.
“It is a rivalry game,” he added. “And you want to play with pride but you can’t have those kind of turnovers against a team like Elizabethton. I told the girls it was a big game, but not the most important this week, with us going to North Greene Friday for the conference.”
Elizabethton opened the contest outscoring Hampton 10-2 and rode the momentum to a 23-4 advantage at the end of the first frame. Hampton started to chip away with 10 points in the second period but the Lady Cyclones would close the gap, leading 38-14.
Point guard Emily Kiser tallied in nine points and forward Sarah Robinson added seven points. Melenda Perry, Emily Schubert and Haley Burleson rounded out the scoring production for Dugger’s crew.
Lady Bulldog Kim Swearingen tacked on five points, while Megan Garland added four and Madi Weir had two. Swearingen had five assists while Bowers, held scoreless in the return, dished out a pair of assists with a couple of steals.
AROUND THE COURT
The Lady Cyclones’ win tonight is their 34th straight since the 2013-2014 season. Elizabethan’s last loss was on Friday, Jan. 3 in 2014 against Science Hill … During Elizabethton’s post-Christmas stint in Charleston, they defeated champs from South Carolina and Alabama by a 142-73 margin …The Lady Cyclones are averaging 26 point win-margins in their past six games with the closet win coming back on Nov. 28 against Greeneville (61-53) … Hampton sophomore post Tatum Street missed the contest due to flu-like symptoms, according to coach Hazelwood, with a potential return set for Friday.
Elizabethton at Johnson County on Tuesday
Hampton at North Greene on Friday