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Newton-Conoverâ€™s girls varsity team improved to 2-0 in conference play Friday night, with a 59-47 win over Bandys.
The Trojans took an early 4-3 lead in the first quarter, but the Lady Red Devils went on a 13-2 run to end the quarter and take the momentum.
â€śWe talked about coming out and going right at them,â€ť said Newton-Conover head coach Jonathan Tharp. â€śWe knew we had to come out and be aggressive and match their intensity. Bandys has been scoring a lot of points lately, so it was important we set the tempo.â€ť
After taking their only lead of the night, 4-3 in the opening minutes of the game, the Trojansâ€™ offense fell quiet, being shut out for more than 4 minutes. Bandys had 19 turnovers in the first half, but did manage to out-rebound Newton-Conover 36-to-31 during the first two quarters.
â€śBandys gets a lot of points in transition,â€ť Tharp said. â€śWe felt like if we could make them play in the half-court, and limit our mistakes offensively, then we would have a chance to win.â€ť
Kadesha Gibbs and Quazzy Tipps led Newton-Conover with 16 points each, while Shynese Whitener added another 14 points in the win.
â€śWe have great guards, but to win you have to play well in the post, and Kadesha is everything we want down there,â€ť Tharp said. â€śSheâ€™s big, plays physical and makes tough shots. She works hard and is a big piece of our puzzle.â€ť
Newton-Conover usedÂ aÂ zone defense to pressure Bandys in the half-court,Â resulting inÂ 26 Lady TrojanÂ turnovers.Â The Lady Red Devils alsoÂ finished the game 17-of-24 from the foul line.Â
â€śWe are still growing, and itâ€™s good to see that we are learning in game situations,â€ť Tharp said. â€śWe made some rash decisions on the offensive end, but we were able to capitalize on the defensive side with limiting their shots and creating turnovers.â€ť
For Bandys, freshman Madi Story led all scorers with 18 points during the night, scoring 13 in the second half. Jesse Story also finished with 8 points,Â nettingÂ a pair of three-pointers in the second half,Â in the loss.
â€śThe real key for us was limiting Jesse to just 8 points, but the younger one, Madi, is going to be a special player,â€ť Tharp said. â€śShe may be their overall best player, defensive and offensive wise, and sheâ€™s only a freshman. And that is scary for the years to come.â€ť
Bandys moves to 6-2 overall on the season and 1-1 in conference play, while Newton-Conover improves to 5-1 on the year and 2-0 in the conference.