The Liberty County Lady Panthers defeated the Long County Lady Tide 60-22 on Friday, and downed the McIntosh Academy Lady Buccaneers 62-51 on Saturday. However, the back-to-back wins also cost the Panthers two players. Senior Miata Askew suffered a knee injury Friday and sophomore Diamone Johnson was hurt Saturday.
So, Lady Panther coach Carolyn Kelly is preparing for tonight’s region opener against Washington County and tomorrow’s region game at Thomson without her starting shooting guard and strong forward.
"We are hoping these younger players will step in and give us the same quality minutes that our two injured players would give us," Kelly said during practice Wednesday.
Askew has been consistently hitting buckets from the outside and passing the ball in. Johnson has aided the team as a top scorer, nabbing double-doubles in nearly every game.
The coach said she expects Washington County will be a tough team, even though one of their shooting guards from last year graduated."They have some younger players who we know are going to step up and give them a lot of offense," she said. "We need to try and maintain what we’ve been doing without our two players. We need to maintain our full court pressure and work the ball around on offense and open it up on the outside with Kourtney Alexander and Anika Taylor and hit Rhodes on the inside."
The Lady Golden Hawks are 5-1 overall, but are 2-1 against the Lady Panthers. Tip-off tonight is at 7 p.m.
Saturday, the girls regroup and travel to Thomson for a 6 p.m. game.
The Lady Bulldogs are 4-2 for the season, but are 0-2 against the Liberty girls. Kelly said the strategy against Thomson will be different than the one she’s planned for Washington.
"Last year they were extremely young, but they were a big team with a lot of kids in the 5’9-6’ area," she said. "With that in mind, we may have to go to a zone defense against them to cut down the inside pass."
Lady Panthers 18 34 48 62
Lady Buccs 7 18 34 51
Kourtney Alexander: 17
Courtney Rhodes: 16
Diamone Johnson: 15
Precious Williams: 6
Catherine Scaggs: 4
The undefeated Panther boys (9-0) are 1-2 against the Golden Hawks of Washington County and 3-1 against the Thomson Bulldogs. The boys games will play tonight and tomorrow after the girls.