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Lady Bruins fall short in bid

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By Dylan Knight

Lancaster battled Spartanburg to the wire, but the host Lady Vikings held on for a 46-42 win over the Lady Bruins in the opening round of the Class AAAA Upper State girls basketball playoffs on Tuesday night.

Lancaster, the No. 4 seed out of Region III-AAAA, challenged the Lady Vikings, champions of Region II-AAAA, to the final horn.

"Our girls showed a lot of heart and I'm proud of them," Lancaster High School coach Ronnie Robinson said.

Lancaster, which finished 13-7, took a 32-29 lead into the final period, but the Lady Vikings rallied to pull out the four-point win with a 17-10 final-period surge.

Spartanburg, 22-4, was able to gain the lead in the final two minutes and protected it to the finish.

"We didn't capitalize on some key opportunities," Robinson said. "We played hard, but we made some costly turnovers. Spartanburg hit the boards pretty hard."

Lancaster, which had a tough night at the foul line, had a chance to tie with 20 seconds to play, but missed on a key one-and-one.

"We didn't make our free throws and that hurt us," Robinson said.

The Lady Bruins were 7-20 at the foul line, while Spartanburg hit on 14 of 22 shots at the free throw line.

Tierra Young paced the Lady Vikings, hitting 17 points. Sequaya Casey chipped in 15 points.

Tamesha Fletcher paced the Lady Bruins with 12 points. LHS senior Miteka Trueheart had 10 points. Quana Jones and Tenisha Howze had seven points apiece.

Dimaya Jones added five points and Tesha Tipton had one point.

Spartanburg took a 10-6 lead after one period, but Lancaster rallied with a 14-6 second period run to take a 20-16 lead at the break. The third period was near even before Spartanburg rallied for the win at the end.

The two teams came out tight in the early going, but settled into a flow and battled to the end.

The Lady Vikings advance to host Wren, which defeated Lexington in the opening round.

The game capped the basketball careers of LHS seniors Trueheart, Howze and Tipton.

"This has been a good group," Robinson said. "Tonight was a tough loss, but we will look to next year because we have a good group coming back."

"After a tough season last year, we came back and showed some pride," Robinson said.

Lady Warriors fall

Indian Land took an early exit in the Class A Upper State girls basketball playoffs with a 52-40 loss to host Calhoun County on Tuesday night.

The Lady Warriors, who captured the Class A Upstate title last season, battled against the Lady Saints, but couldn't pull off the upset.

Calhoun County, seeded second in Conference IV-A, held a 22-18 lead at the break after the game was tied at 7-all at the break.

Calhoun County was able to extend its lead, using a 16-9 third-period run to take a 38-27 lead into the final period before posting the 12-point win.

"We stayed focused and did what we had to do," said Calhoun County coach Venice Greene. "Indian Land's a young team with mostly freshmen and sophomores, but never went away. Indian Land played hard and really made us earn it."

The Lady Saints were led by Latoya Caldwell who hit 21 points. She grabbed six rebounds and added three assists. Laneisha Davis scored 11 points and had six assists for CC, which improved to 12-7 on the season.

Dominique Stewart and Kimberly Gibson scored 10 points apiece.

Jelisa Gordon led the Lady Warriors with 11 points. Mariah Williams hit nine and Mykela Hallums scored eight. Hannah Harris chipped in seven points.

Indian Land qualified for the playoffs as the third-seeded team out of Conference III-A.

Calhoun County advances to play at Calhoun Falls on Friday night.

Lady Vols defeated

Kingstree bolted to an early lead and stayed in control to eliminate Andrew Jackson in the Class AA Lower State girls playoffs with a 79-31 win.

The Lady Jaguars raced to a 13-2 lead to open the game and owned a 31-13 spread at the half.

Kingstree opened the third period with a 13-0 charge and led 46-17 after three periods.

"This game was much like our season," AJ coach Dennis Farmer said. "We had way too many turnovers and didn't protect the ball.

"We also didn't do a good job on the defensive boards," Farmer said.

The Lady Volunteers were led by Erica Ealy, who scored 21 points. Ealy scored 15 points in the second half when she scored all but three of the Lady Vols points.

"Erica had a strong game," Farmer said. "She really stepped up her game tonight."

Jazzy Gripper netted seven and Ashley Phillips chipped in a trey, the only other points in the second half.

The Lady Jaguars were led by Yvette McGreg who scored 17 points, 10 in the second half. Lalisa Brown followed with 12 and Michelle Ridden chipped in nine points.

Andrew Jackson qualified for the playoffs as the fourth seed out of Conference VIII-AA.