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Sunday, Nov. 23, 2014

Sikeston defense turns up heat

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

(Photo)
Sikeston's Allison Blurton (20) drives past Caruthersville's Marsha Sargent.
SIKESTON -- Sikeston's girls basketball team posted its eighth win of the season on Monday, overwhelming Caruthersville 54-26.

The Lady Bulldogs won the game on the defensive side of the ball, forcing 21 turnovers while limiting the Lady Tigers to just nine field goals.

The victory was a bit of revenge for head coach Lee Brooks, following last year's loss at Caruthersville.

"We are a different team this year," said Brooks. "It wasn't easy. Caruthersville came in with a good game plan. We had to keep pushing and pushing."

Sikeston was led by the sophomore trio of Allison Blurton, Whitney McCray and Amber Anthony.

Blurton and McCray each scored 10, while Anthony scored all nine of her points in the fourth quarter.

"Amber has been doing a great job for us on the junior varsity this year," explained Brooks. "She is a varsity player, but we didn't have a ball handler at the junior varsity level. I asked her to do it, and she's such a good-hearted kid, she has done it for us. I still need her on varsity to back up Paige (Silverthorn). She's learning so much and improving so fast. I really trust her a lot, and I wanted to play her tonight to get her some more experience."

After a strong start to the season, Caruthersville has fallen on hard times. The Lady Tigers lost two starters to grades, one to a knee injury and one moved to Indiana.

Their struggles continued on Monday as Sikeston raced out to a 9-2 lead and never looked back.

"We are without four girls that played 20-plus minutes," said Caruthersville coach David McCormack. "We had a great start to the season. Now, we're just scratching and clawing, trying to get ready for next year."

Caruthersville did do a good job of containing Sikeston's post game. The Lady Tigers played a tight zone, forcing the Lady Bulldogs to shoot from the outside.

"We'll pack it in and make people beat us from the outside," said McCormack. "That's all we're going to be able to do right now with our limited personnel. That's just how it its."

Sikeston outscored Caruthersville 13-6 in the first quarter and 16-4 in the second to hold a commanding 29-10 lead at the break. Caruthersville attempted to get back into the game from long range in the third quarter.

Fanchon Wiley sank three 3-pointers as the Lady Tigers shaved Sikeston's lead down to 14 points.

"If people leave Fanchon open, she can take over a game," said McCormack. "She gets tired because I have to play her all 32 minutes."

Sikeston's defense thwarted any comeback attempt in the final quarter, finishing the game with a 17-3 run.

Wiley and Erica Malone led Caruthersville in scoring with nine points each.

"That's about all we have left," said McCormack. "They are about the only scoring threats we've got."

The Lady Tigers (4-6) will host Campbell on Thursday night, while Sikeston (8-4) travels to Notre Dame.

Sikeston lost Monday's junior varsity game to Caruthersville 32-21. Blanca Smith paced the Lady Tigers with 11 points. For Sikeston, Anthony led the way with eight and Latoya Gipson added seven.