Baux­ite picks up big road win

The Saline Courier - - SPORTS - By Tony Le­na­han tle­na­[email protected]­ton­

SHERI­DAN — After open­ing the year with two wins, the Baux­ite Lady Min­ers would lose two straight in the semi­fi­nals and third­place game of their host Baux­ite Tour­na­ment this past week and week­end.

But, the Lady Min­ers would snap that two-game skid with a big road win Mon­day in Sheri­dan. Baux­ite came away with a 51-43 vic­tory as the Lady Min­ers took care of the ball for the first time this sea­son, ac­cord­ing to firstyear Head Coach Spencer Gay.

“I thought the team played hard,” Gay said. “We’ve been strug­gling with turnovers lately and it’s the first time I re­ally feel like we took care of the bas­ket­ball. We were re­ally picky with our shot se­lec­tion. We did a very good job of work­ing the ball un­til they got a good shot. That def­i­nitely played in our fa­vor.”

The Lady Min­ers would trail 13-11 after one quar­ter, but a big se­cond quar­ter, led by se­niors Lauren Bain­ter’s and Lynsey Mangum’s six points apiece in the frame helped Baux­ite to a 26-21 lead at the half.

The two teams played even in the third quar­ter at seven points each for the 33-28 lead after three, and the Lady Min­ers put up their high­est scor­ing out­put of the game in the fourth, outscor­ing the Lady Jack­ets 18-15 to hold on to vic­tory.

It was Bain­ter once again who led the Lady Min­ers, putting up a sea­son-high 23 points, 14 in the first half, and was 7 of 7 from the free

throw line.

“Some­times I re­ally don’t re­al­ize how much she scores un­til the game is over,” Gay said of Bain­ter. “She gets so much at­ten­tion inside the paint and that’s re­ally what opens up our other kids with open shots from the out­side.”

The main re­cip­i­ent from the out­side was sharp­shooter Mangum, who came through with 13 points, in­clud­ing two first-half 3-poin­t­ers.

“Mangum is an enigma to me,” Gay said. “It’s my first year with her and she’s still try­ing to fig­ure out my sys­tem. She’s been re­ally free with the shots that she takes. I love her to death be­cause she has no con­science. She wants to shoot the ball.”

Gay said Mangum has prob­a­bly earned her start­ing spot back after com­ing off the bench the last three

games and pro­duc­ing.

“She started the first two games of the sea­son and has come off the bench the last three games,” Gay said. “She’s still putting up 10 point per game off the bench. I think last night she re-es­tab­lished her­self as the starter. She can re­ally score the ball.”

Sopho­more Bethany Har­rell fol­lowed with six points, ju­nior Olivia Mcdade added five and se­nior Cy­nia John­son had four points in the win.

The Lady Min­ers will get the rest of Thanks­giv­ing week off be­fore re­sum­ing play in the Bill Gibbs Tour­na­ment Tues­day in Haskell at Daniel Hen­ley Field­house. Baux­ite tips off with Per­ryville at 4 p.m.

The Baux­ite Min­ers fell in a close one in the night­cap in Sheri­dan Mon­day, los­ing 41-36 to the Yellowjack­ets for their se­cond straight de­feat to move to 3-2 on the sea­son. The Min­ers will also be play­ing in the Bill Gibbs, tak­ing on Per­ryville Tues­day at 5:20 p.m.

KA­T­RINA CHAVERS/SPE­CIAL to The Saline Courier

Baux­ite se­nior Lauren Bain­ter looks to pass in a game ear­lier this sea­son. Bain­ter led the Lady Min­ers with 23 points in a 51-43 vic­tory over the Lady Jack­ets in Sheri­dan Mon­day. Bain­ter’s 23 was a sea­son­high.

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