VALDOSTA — Brunswick girls 58, Valdosta 51
Brunswick’s girls dominated the first quarter, and built a lead that Valdosta was unable to overcome.
It was only the second loss of the season for the Lady Wildcats (15-2).
Early on, everything the Lady Pirates did seemed to work. Their full court press gave Valdosta trouble, creating several turnovers, and they handled Valdosta’s press well.
Ninety seconds into the game, Valdosta held a 3-2 lead. But then Brunswick caught fire. Brea Thomas made a free throw.
Then Kilah Nixon took over the game. She made a free throw and a layup on consecutive possessions. A little over a minute later, Briana Gipson stole the ball and passed it to Nixon for a layup. Then Nixon stole the ball and dribbled in for a basket. A Lady Pirates player grabbed a rebound off a missed VHS shot and passed to a teammate, who threw a long pass to Nixon for another basket. Destiny Alston’s putback completed a 12-0 run, and gave Brunswick a 14-3 lead.
The Lady Pirates added to their lead with an 8-2 run at the end of the first period. Alston scored six of those eight points, and her off-balance layup at the buzzer gave Brunswick a 25-10 lead at the end of one quarter.
The Lady Pirates held a 41-25 lead at halftime and a 46-29 lead with 6:30 left in the third quarter.
But the Lady Wildcats weren’t ready to give up. Shaneika Smith made two free throws. Destiny Covert got the ball under the basket and scored, and Terri Oglesby scored on a putback. Stormm Phillips got the ball in the paint and scored. Smith converted a three-point play, then drove for a layup the next time she touched the ball. That 13-0 run turned a 17-point Brunswick lead into a four-point lead, 46-42, heading into the final period.
Tiaera Phillips’ basket at the start of the fourth quarter pulled the Lady Wildcats within two points, 46-44.
But Brunswick slowed the pace of the game in the fourth period, and that helped stop Valdosta’s momentum. The Lady ‘Cats only managed two field goals in the final 5:45, and couldn’t get any closer than two points.
Brunswick beat Valdosta’s press twice in the final minute, and both times, Nixon got layups, which put the game away.
Alston led the Lady Pirates with 22 points. Nixon scored 16 points and Gipson added 10.
Tiaera Phillips scored 13 points for Valdosta, while Smith added 12.
Valdosta will travel to Camden County today. The girls’ game begins at 6 p.m.