Tuesday’s game against the DeKalb County Lady Tigers was supposed to be the first real test for the Warren County High School girls basketball team. The Lady Pioneers probably want a make-up exam after their performance.
The Lady Pioneers suffered their first loss of the season, a 49-31 defeat at the hands of a hot-shooting DeKalb County squad.
Warren County (4-1) feasted on a favorable early season schedule, but Tuesday’s tussle with the Lady Tigers was when the Lady Pioneers wanted to prove their success wasn’t a fluke.
For a half, Warren County looked poised to extend its winning streak to five games, but the Lady Tigers shot the lights out in the third quarter to snap the streak.
A 15-0 run in the third quarter, fueled by four 3-pointers, turned a close game into a blowout as the Lady Pioneers couldn’t contain the DeKalb County guards.
Lady Pioneer coach Erick Baird knew the Lady Tigers would fire from the outside all game and the hot streak proved to be the difference.
“They are a team that will live or die by the three and they lived by it Tuesday,” said Baird. “We’ve got to get better on the defensive end and take advantage of our looks around the rim on offense.”
Warren County struck first when Bri Melton sank a 3-pointer to start the game, but DeKalb County answered with a 7-0 run which included two 3-pointers by the home team.
Senior Rachel Nokes ended the Lady Tiger surge with a jumper off an assist from Melton, but the Lady Pioneers found themselves trailing 13-9 after the first period.
DeKalb County extended its advantage to nine early in the second quarter with another 3-pointer, but the Lady Pioneers fought back with a 5-0 run.
Brittany Myers started the streak with a free throw, then senior Megan Dishman scored off a perfectly executed inbounds play. Nokes capped the rally with a layup.
The teams went back and forth to end the half, but Melton made it 22-17 going into the locker rooms with a late 3-pointer.
Melton made it a three-point game shortly after halftime when she got an easy layup off a good look from Myers, but DeKalb County would heat up to put the game away.
After Myers fed Jessie Newby for another layup to make it 24-21 with six minutes to go in the third quarter, DeKalb County would score the next 15 points.
Chelsea Lewis started the rally with a three-point play, then four straight 3-pointers hit nothing but net as the Lady Tigers took a 39-21 lead.
Warren County ended the quarter with back-to-back baskets by Nokes and freshman Allison Hitchcock and Melton began the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer to make it an 11-point game, but the Lady Pioneers would never get closer.
DeKalb County hit its 10th 3-pointer with 3:16 left in the game to put away the Lady Pioneers for good.
Melton led the Lady Pioneers with 13 points, followed by Nokes with six.
Warren County will play today and tomorrow in the Mitch Wilson Classic held in Cannon County.