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Whitson’s big third quarter key to Lady Indians’ victory

Douglas Fritz • Dec 19, 2018 at 1:34 AM

DANDRIDGE — All things being equal, Dobyns-Bennett had The Unequalizer.

Courtney Whitson starred in that role, presenting a surprise plot twist of 17 third-quarter points — she finished with 28 — to allow the Lady Indians to pull away from Jefferson County and earn a 55-39 girls basketball victory on the road Tuesday night.

FIRST HALF

The Lady Indians (11-1) — who avenged last year’s region semifinal loss on the same court — struggled to find an offensive rhythm in the first two quarters Tuesday.

“Jeff County will do that to you,” said D-B coach Bill Francis. “They’re really solid defensively. Courtney got a little frustrated in the first half. And as a team we took some bad shots.”

Still, the Lady Indians were able to battle out to a 21-15 halftime lead.

KEY THIRD QUARTER

Whitson found her range, scorching the nets for three 3-pointers and four 2-pointers. The Tribe banked 25 points and outscored Jefferson County (8-3) by a 25-11 margin in the third.

“I thought our press really helped us tonight,” Francis said. “We’re getting better.”

The Lady Patriots didn’t go without a fight. Trailing 46-26, they eventually whittled the deficit to 10 before D-B responded and closed the deal.

“The only way to stop it is to make a play,” Francis said of Jefferson County’s run. “We talk about that a lot.”

Megan Ayers was one of the Lady Indians who stepped up and made plays.

“Their 1-3-1 really got us,” Ayers said. “Turnover after turnover, and it got in our minds. But we calmed down, got someone in the middle, passed it up the court and played smart.”

FOR THE LADY PATRIOTS

Alexa Gramann led the Lady Patriots with 17 points. MaKayla Alvey added 13.

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