Lady Tigers pull away late for first win
After a frustrating loss in their opening game Saturday at Eastside, Alcovy's girls basketball team rebounded with 60-47 win over rival Newton Tuesday.
Alcovy let a 3-point lead with less than a minute slip away on the road against the Lady Eagles but turned the tables on Newton after outscoring the Lady Rams 22-8 in the fourth quarter.
"We actually had a very good fourth quarter in our last game and we just kept taking it to them (Newton) with a don't-quit attitude that our kids are accustomed to playing with and we were able to pull it out," Alcovy coach Kidada Holtzclaw said.
Alcovy's Megan Tucker led all scorers with 19 points. Kate Palo scored 13 and was big in the fourth quarter. She scored seven during the final period including five straight to cap a 9-0 run with the game tied at 45. Palo's 3-pointer put Alcovy up 54-45 with 2:28 left to play and the Lady Tigers never looked back.
"One of the things we talked about doing was attacking the basket and that's what we were trying to do," Holtzclaw said. "We weren't finishing a lot of our shots in the first half but we did a better job of moving the ball around and not taking a shot on the first or second pass in the second half. We were just trying to make them guard us more and we were able to break them down off the dribble."
Things didn't look to good for Alcovy early on. Newton led 11-7 at the end of the first quarter and had a 22-15 lead midway through the second quarter before Alcovy closed the half on a 9-4 run.
The two teams went back and forth throughout the third quarter but Alcovy managed to outscore Newton 14-13 to close the gap to one heading into the final period.
Alcovy took a 3-point lead early in the fourth before Danyel Fourney scored inside and converted the 3-point play after getting fouled. After two straight Alcovy buckets, Palo made a layup off a steal before bombing a three from the left side to extend Alcovy's lead to nine. Alcovy finished the game on a 13-3 run.
Fourney led the way for Newton with 15 points while Precious Price also scored in double figures with 10. Ashley Williams had a double-double for Alcovy, finishing with 10 points and 11 rebounds.
"Ashley is our beast inside," Holtzclaw said. "We rely on her a lot to take care of post players on the offensive and defensive end. When the ball goes up, we know she's going to be involved in the rebound in some way."
Now in her second year, Holtzclaw was quick to downplay her first win over Newton. She was pleased none the less.
"It's good but it's not something we focus heav- ily on," Holtzclaw said. "Beating the county teams aren't going to get us to the state championship. But it's nice to beat the neighbors and with this being my first win over Newton, it feels very good."
Quick step: Kate Palo takes it strong to the basket in the fourth quarter during Alcovy's 60-47 win over Newton Tuesday.
The stare: Alcovy's DeVon Edwards looks for teammates during the Tigers' 46-40 loss at home Tuesday.