After what seemed like a Christmas break that would never end, basketball was back in full force and the Eastside Bulldogs would face off with their cross county rival, the Centertown Warriors. It would be all Eastside on Monday night as it would sweep its competition right out of the gym, starting with the girls. The Lady Bulldogs would outlast the Lady Warriors, 27-14.
Centertown got off to a very shaky start. The Lady Warriors were unable to put up a single point in the first quarter. Eastside was covering the floor and matching up with Centertown step for step. Neither team came out of the gate sharp, but it was the Lady Bulldogs making the most of the scoring opportunities that arose.
A total of three Lady Bulldogs found their way into the scoring column by the end of the first quarter. Grayson Hillis, Rylie Crawford, and Kyla Baker all scored in the opening quarter for Eastside and by the end of one the score was 6-0 in favor of the Bulldogs.
Coach Isaac Slatton must have said something to the Lady Warriors at the end of the first quarter that lit a fire under them. The Lady Warriors opened up the second quarter with a flurry of baskets in just a couple of minutes and the defense finally showed up for Centertown, holding the Lady Bulldogs to a second quarter low of only four points.
The Lady Warriors looked like a completely different group in the second quarter.
Points from Macie Walker, Drew Davis, and Abbey Bain along with two others would bring Centertown right back into the game by halftime. The Lady Bulldogs were caught completely off guard and appeared to be in shock after Centertown had come charging back to make a game out of it. Heading into the halftime the score was tied at 10.
Would Eastside be able to stop the momentum just shown by the Lady Warriors? The answer was a definitive yes. Centertown fell right back into its first-quarter ways will careless passing and turnovers. Scoring for the Lady Warriors had disappeared as quickly as it had shown up.
The defense for Eastside stepped up big coming out in the second half and, unlike Centertown, the Lady Bulldogs put points up to widen the gap. Heading into the fourth it was Eastside in front, 17-12.
With the outcome still up in the air, the Lady Bulldogs would take control of the fourth quarter outscoring the Lady Warriors again in the final period.
Kapri Talley would point up points late in the game for the Lady Bulldogs, and Hillis would connect from behind the arch for Eastside as the Lady Bulldogs began to pull away. The Lady Bulldog defense did not allow any easy baskets underneath. Centertown would go to the free throw line on three different occasions only to come up empty.
And as time expired on Centertown, the Lady Warriors looked like they were still on Christmas break and the Eastside Lady Bulldogs took full advantage of the situation.
EASTSIDE SCORING - Kapri Talley 10, Grayson Hillis 8, Rylie Crawford 5, Shani Polombo 2, Kyla Baker 2
CENTERTOWN SCORING - Drew Davis 4, Abbey Bain 4, Gracie Self 2, Macie Walker 2, Raeleigh Moore 2