Jacksonville Daily Progress
Jacksonville combined a stifling defense with a balanced scoring attack to notch a 50-40 victory over Whitehouse in the District 16-4A opener, which was played at the JHS Gymnasium on Friday night.
The Fight'n Maidens (14-10, 1-0) held the Ladycats (10-7, 0-1) to a paltry 29.6-percent (16-of-54) from the field while placing three players in double figures.
Jasmine Parson led the way with a double-double (17 points and 10 rebounds), Chancii Scott followed with 15 and eight boards and Sametria Baker accounted for 10 points, all of which came in the second half.
Jacksonville head coach Tony Harris was thrilled with the win, but he was quick to add that his team in no way played up to its full capability.
“It's always good to win the district opener, especially when you are playing at home,” Harris said. “I'm pleased with their effort and at the same time I know how much better we are capable of playing.”
With the score tied at eight, Jacksonville opened the second quarter on a 13-1 run which the Ladycats did not have an answer for.
Parson scored five of Jacksonville's points during the progression.
The scoring outburst by the Jacksonville girls gave the team a nice cushion to work with for the rest of the game as the Maidens never relinquished the double-digit advantage.
Baker, one of the team's seniors, gave the Maidens a lift offensively in scoring a season-best 10 points.
“I knew how important it was for us to get this win because you don't want to get behind in this district and then have to play catch up,” Baker said. “I got some good looks at the basket tonight and that made it easy to make the shots.”
Harris said he was proud of Baker's efforts for another reason.
“What I liked the most was she (Baker) had the confidence to take a lot of shots,” he said. “That gives us another weapon out there and that's what we need as we go forth in district.”
Jacksonville shot 45.8-percent (22-of-48) from the field and out rebounded the Ladycats 34-23.
Ashton Ates put in 10 points and had a game-high 14 rebounds to lead the Ladycats while Kenslie Dews added 10 points.
The Maidens travel to John Tyler this evening, but will be back home Friday for a 6 p.m. tip off against Lindale.