Lady Eagles defeat Rocky Bayou in 1st round of shootout

Published 11:51 pm Friday, January 2, 2009

The Pleasant Home Lady Eagles put up a close game against Rocky Bayou in their opening game in the Alabama-Florida Shootout Friday night, winning, 52-48.

The Lady Eagles trailed in the first quarter, but quickly got the lead going into halftime, 27-23.

Pleasant Home coach Kelley Garner said the girls played like a team after a lengthy break off the court.

“It looked like the first game back after a two-week break,” Garner said. “Maybe it won’t take us 20 minutes to get us rolling (in the next game).

“I thought (Rocky Bayou) were a good team and I’m glad we’re getting to play a team with their caliber and Baker, those are two good teams we’ll get to play right before area play,” she said. “We still did not play real smart (Friday night). That concerns me. We’ve got to play smarter and we’ve got to know how to take care of the basketball.

“I thought we started out real flat and it took us midway through third quarter when we decided to we were going to have to play.”

In the third quarter, the Lady Eagles put up 13 points compared to Bayou’s 11. Then, in the fourth, Pleasant Home closed it out, putting up 12 points to get the win.

Garner said one positive from Friday night’s game was the free throws made.

“We shot free throws real well tonight,” she said. “They probably saved us. We were 18-of-24 (on free throws). We really stepped up in the fourth quarter and played defense. We had some big plays on defense that saved us.”

In order to beat Baker tonight, Garner said her team has to play better because of their opponent’s skill on the court.

“Baker’s going to be a good team and they’re going to be well coached and they are fundamentally sound,” Garner said. “They’re going to give us a good game. I hope we play a lot better (tonight).

“I hope getting that game under our belts will help us get back on track. It took us about a half to get going,” she said. “The Baker game should be a good one.”

Leading scorers for the Lady Eagles were Erin Byrd with 14 points, Ariel Gunter with 12 and Brittany Ward with 11.

Tip off tonight against Baker is at 6:30 p.m.