The White County Warriorettes advanced to the semifinals of the District 7/AAA Tournament on Tuesday with their dominant 67-36 win over Stone Memorial.
The Warriorettes started the game hot on offense, as they jumped out to a 12-1 lead before Stone finally broke through from the field with a three-pointer. By the time the first-quarter buzzer sounded, White County found themselves with an 18-6 lead.
The second quarter saw Stone put together a little more offensive success, but they weren’t able to slow down the White County offense at the other end. The Warriorettes went on to outscore the Lady Panthers 14-10 in the frame to take a 32-16 advantage into the halftime break.
The third quarter saw a White County milestone occur early, as junior Nia Powers scored her 1,000th point in her Sparta career. It helped push the Warriorette lead to 54-27 at the end of the third, and that allowed head coach Michael Dodgen to play some younger players and get out of the game healthy.
When the final buzzer sounded, it was the White County Warriorettes who were moving on in the district tournament, as they defeated Stone Memorial 67-36.
Powers paced the Warriorettes with 20 points, while Celeste Reed added 13 points of her own. Alaina Stiles scored 12 points, and Ava Jones contributed 11 points.
For Dodgen, he said the game felt like a return-to-normal for his team, as they have dealt with a wealth of adversity over the past week.
“I feel like we were more of ourselves,” Dodgen said. “Put aside the two losses to Crossville, it’s been a rough week around here…Teenagers aren’t supposed to go through that stuff. It’s been a tough week, and I think we finally were able to catch our breath. Brayden (Taylor)’s doing good, they know that. Now we can just relax and play basketball.”
Powers follows teammate Stiles with her milestone in the third quarter, something Dodgen says is a testament to her work ethic and her ability to help the team in numerous ways.
“Nia works hard, and does a lot of things and is the focal point (defensively) for a lot of people,” Dodgen said. “She can score from the perimeter, and she can score from inside… if you ask Alaina or Nia, they’ll trade a lot in for that 1,000 points. I’m hoping we’re able to do that over the next couple of weeks.”
Dodgen also spoke highly of lone Stone Memorial senior Katie Adkisson, admiring the pride she showed for the Lady Panther program over the course of her four seasons.
“You’ve got to admire Katie Adkisson,” Dodgen said. “I know some kids didn’t come back and play this year from their great teams over the past couple of years, and she came out and had a lot of pride about her program. You can tell that it meant a lot to a senior, the way she came off of the floor.”
The Warriorettes will now take on the Livingston Academy Lady Wildcats, fresh off of their win over Macon County, at 4 p.m., Feb. 18, at Tennessee Tech.
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