The Lady Pioneers travelled to Tullahoma on Tuesday night for their first regular season game after winning three Hall of Fame games.
Tullahoma’s Lady Wildcats were their most formidable foe to date, and the Warren County girls lost their first game of the season, 38-32. That gives them a season record of 3-1. The Lady Pioneers can bounce back this Friday night when they face DeKalb County at home.
Tullahoma’s game plan may be a harbinger of what the Lady Pioneers will see throughout the season. The Lady Wildcat head coach Cody McMurtry said, “We thought No. 10 (Sable Winfree) was the key to making their offense flow, so we came into the game trying to stop her.”
It is a similar game plan that teams who are familiar with the Lady Pioneer soccer team used by putting a defender or two on Katie Toney. Sable Winfree can expect teams to give extra effort to stop her this season.
Warren County led at the end of the first quarter, 10-8, but was outscored 16-7 in the second quarter. The second quarter proved to be the difference. Of course every quarter counts, but the Lady Pioneers could not overcome the 7-point deficit at halftime, 24-17. Tullahoma’s size and quickness combined with a physical defense made it difficult to cut down the Lady Wildcats’ lead in the second half.
Kyra Perkins led Warren County in scoring with 11 points. It was a defensive battle for both teams. Warren County held Tullahoma under 40 points, but could not get on track offensively. Coach Lippe commented about missed layups and free throws after the game that probably would have made a major difference – if Warren County had made a higher percentage of shots. Give Tullahoma credit for keeping Warren County to only 32 points.
WCHS head coach Anythony Lippe commented after the game, “Tullahoma is a well-coached team. They are bigger than us I think at every position, and we knew that coming in. Losing Jaden, we get even smaller. They were extremely physical. I feel as though we matched their level in terms of being physical. We are going to face teams that will be physical like that this season.”
“We have to shoot better than 56% at the free throw line. Our girls know that. We work on free throws every day. We did put pressure on them with our defense. We created turnovers, but we would turn it right back over to them. We have to clean that up.”
“Our girls have not seen that type of size, but they will when we play Sparta and Coffee County. It is going to be something that we have to manage.”
LADY PIONEERS 32
WARREN COUNTY Kyra Perkins 11, Shelby Smartt 7, Brienne Kelsey 4, Mia Hobbs 3, Sable Winfree 3, Savannah Winfree 2, Lex Verge 2
TULLAHOMA Eleanor Fults 10, Isabella Lidstrom 6, Lucy Nutt 6, Morgan Carr 5, Lily Melton 5, Alivia Bowen 3, Nyjah Gibbs 3