The Patrick County High Lady Cougars dropped their first game of the season in a hard-fought game against North Stokes, 53-45. The game, played on December 8, featured the unbeaten Lady Cougars and the 5-1 Lady Vikings.
Both squads were strong defensively to start the game, with neither team able to get much going on offense in the early going. Tied at 11 with a minute to go, the Lady Cougars grabbed the lead briefly, but a late Lady Viking 3-pointer gave them a 14-13 lead at the end of one.
Patrick County Head Coach Tony Mosley liked the physical way his team was playing on defense. “That’s our style, being hard-nosed and physical.”
The Lady Cougars got off to a strong start in the second, grabbing a 22-18 lead following a Kendra Worley 3-pointer with 4:30 to go in the half. From there, the teams battled back and forth, with North Stokes taking a 2-point lead into the half at 29-27.
The second half was much like the first, with both teams playing strong, physical defense. In the latter part of the third quarter, North Stokes broke the Lady Cougar full court press several times, allowing them to extend their lead to five at 48-38 through three.
“We knew that #4 (Caroline Mabe) was a really good ballplayer, and she showed that tonight. She really broke us down, so we’ve got to make that adjustment,” said Coach Mosley.
The Lady Cougars offense went cold in the fourth quarter. With both teams struggling against the solid defense being played, and emotions running high in the large crowd in attendance, the difference in the game came down to North Stokes hitting timely shots, while the Lady Cougars watched as many shots rattled around the rim, but not fall in. The fourth saw each team score a game low for a quarter, with the two teams combining for just 17 points because of the defensive play on both sides.
“We missed too many layups and missed too many free throws,” said Coach Mosley. “If we had made two more layups, it would have been a different game.”
When the final buzzer sounded, the Lady Cougars had fallen, 53-45.
Leading the way for the Lady Cougars was Aniya Penn with 9 points and 3 assists. Allanah Mitchell had 8 points on the night with Kendra Worley adding 7 points and 3 assists.
Even in their first loss of the season, Coach Mosley liked the effort his team gave. “We fought. We played pretty good and I’m looking forward to the next game.”