Lady Warriors edge Bethel girls
MERRY HILL – Lawrence jumped out to an early lead and held off a furious comeback from Bethel Christian Academy here Tuesday night.
The Lady Warriors got a key bucket from senior Jennifer White with 14 ticks left on the clock and held on to beat the visiting Bethel club 29-24.
White and Casey Belch paced Lawrence with 10 points each while Taylor Sexton added six and Ashton Lyle had three points. Elizabeth Farmer led Bethel with 16.
Farmer hit the first shot of the game when she drilled a three-pointer with 7:04 to play in the first quarter. After that score, however, the Lady Eagles went through a 10-minute drought before scoring again.
Lawrence, however, managed to get a pair of buckets from Belch and one from Sexton in the remainder of the first quarter and take a 6-3 advantage.
Belch hit another bucket to start the second quarter and give Lawrence an 8-3 lead. Jessica Howerton finally stopped Bethel’s scoring drought with a free throw at the 5:06 mark of the quarter.
Lawrence, however rolled off seven unanswered points to push out to a 15-4 lead. White led the run with five of those points while Sexton added the other two.
Bethel finally scored again from the floor with 53 seconds left in the first half on a Charitee Dunlow hoop, but Belch answered the score 20 seconds later to give Lawrence a 17-6 lead at halftime.
Farmer started the third quarter with a pair of hoops that cut the deficit to 17-10, but a free throw by White gave the Warriors an eight-point edge with just over a minute to play in the third quarter.
Farmer, however, hit another triple with 39 seconds left in the period to get the Eagles within 18-13 by the end of the quarter.
Kelsie Conner opened the final quarter with a triple for Bethel that closed the gap to 18-16, but Lawrence finally got their offense moving again when Lyle and White had back-to-back buckets that pushed the lead back to six.
After a Dunlow basket, Lawrence got another pair of consecutive hoops – this time from Sexton and Belch – and added a Lyle free throw to go ahead 26-18.
Bethel wasn’t done, however, as Farmer hit back-to-back triples to close the deficit to 27-24 with 25 seconds to play.
Forced to send the Warriors to the charity stripe, Bethel got what they needed with a missed free throw, but White grabbed the rebound and stuck it back in to preserve the Lawrence victory.
The Lady Warriors will travel to Rocky Mount Academy tonight (Thursday) for a non-conference outing.