ROSE HILL — The Lady Eagles pulled away from a narrow halftime lead, outscoring Clinton 43-9 in the second half, to win the Four County Conference Tournament, 76-37, on Friday.
East Bladen improved to 27-0 with the win.
The first quarter was a scoring free-for-all by both teams. The Lady Eagles got 16 points from Lacey Suggs, including a three-pointer, along with a three-pointer from Ja’Tyra Moore-Peterson to take a slim 23-20 advantage over the Lady Dark Horses, who were led by Alex Cannady’s 10 points.
The second stanza proved to be more defensive, but East Bladen couldn’t separate itself. Suggs canned five points in the quarter and Moore-Peterson drained another three-pointer, but the Lady Eagles only outscored Clinton by a 10-8 margin and slipped into halftime nursing a precarious 33-28 lead.
“Lacey had 21 points at halftime (so) we challenged the other girls … to take over, and they responded,” East Bladen coach Patty Evers said.
Moore-Peterson bombed in a pair of three-pointers in the third quarter, Christiana Cromartie scored seven points and Emily Scott canned a trio of baskets to pace the Lady Eagles’ 26-point attack. Abby Ward also nailed a three-pointer in the period. At the other end of the court, the East Bladen defense began to assert itself, holding the Lady Dark Horses to five points and taking a commanding 59-33 lead.
In the fourth frame, Shardajah Brown hit a three-pointer and the trio of Ward, Scott and Moore-Peterson each canned a pair of baskets as East Bladen outscored Clinton by a 17-4 margin to seal the 39-point win.
“I’m really proud of this group for overcoming the first half and stepping up,” Evers said. “They really responded well (in the second half).”
Suggs led the Lady Eagles with 21 points and added 11 rebounds with three steals, while Moore-Peterson contributed 16 points with four three-pointers, 11 rebounds and three steals. Scott added 12 points with 10 rebounds, while Ward had seven points, 12 assists and six steals. Cromartie contributed 11 points with seven rebounds and six blocked shots.
W. Curt Vincent can be reached by calling 910-862-4163.