Lady Eagles win Straughn tourney

Published 11:59 pm Wednesday, November 26, 2008

No. 4 Pleasant Home’s Erin Byrd and Ariel Gunter scored 15 points apiece to help lead their team to a win over Straughn at the second annual Straughn Thanksgiving tournament championship Wednesday afternoon 51-36.

Straughn advanced to the championship final by beating Opp in the semifinal Tuesday and Pleasant Home beat Geneva in the other semifinal.

The Lady Eagles (5-0) rallied ahead in the first quarter by nine points while only allowing Straughn (4-1) to score five points.

It was not until just before halftime when the Lady Eagles pulled away from the Lady Tigers by 15 points to give them the lead going into the second half of play.

Pleasant Home coach Kelley Garner said the team came out and played well, but could have been a little more intense.

“I was real excited and I thought we played well,” Garner said. “Especially (Tuesday) night because this game was not as intense as last night’s game. I felt like last night we played extremely well and (Wednesday) we just kind of coasted and played just well enough to win.

“I would have liked our intensity to have been a little higher, but I thought a lot of the girls stepped up at big moments and they made big plays for us,” she said. “This is a great great win for us this early in the season beating Geneva and then winning this tournament here. It’s going to be big for us.”

At the end of the third, Straughn still trailed 38-22.

As for the rest of the season, Garner said she believes her girls are more than ready to face the area race.

“We’re excited,” she said. “I believe we may be a little bit ahead of where we need to be at this point beating Geneva with the caliber team that they are. We have a lot of work still do. I saw a lot of things that we need to work on. We’re going to keep working on it every day and continue to try to get better.

“But, right now, we’re excited. We’re going to have a good Thanksgiving and restful couple of days.”

Leading scorers for Straughn were Kimberly Teel with 15 points and Tiffany Freeney with nine points.

Pleasant Home will go on the road to face Straughn on Tues., Dec. 2 and play starts at 4:30 p.m. with the B-team.