A small gathering watched Saturday as the Liberty County Panthers swept the visiting Thomson Bulldogs in a Region 3-AAA basketball doubleheader.
The Lady Panthers’ 40-27 victory put their region record at 1-1. The Panthers are 2-0 in the region after their 71-63 win.
The Lady Panthers (8-3 overall) outscored Thomson 17-7 in the second quarter to break open a tie game.
Shontavia Clay led Liberty County with 11 points. Candice Barham added 10, while Marcella Gordon and Diamone Johnson contributed seven points apiece.
After a break for the holidays, Liberty will visit region opponent West Laurens on Jan. 9.
Thomson 9 7 4 7—27
Liberty 9 17 6 8—40
The Thomson Bulldogs didn’t reach the Panthers’ gym until 20 minutes before tip-off, but the effects of a long bus trip didn’t show early. The Bulldogs held a 20-19 lead after the first quarter, but the Panthers (10-1) clawed their way back in the second quarter, outscoring Thomson 17-11.
Both teams made runs in the second half but the Bulldogs never got closer than three points.
Terrell Johnson led Liberty with 18 points. Teammates Jordan McRae and Rion Brown added 16 and 13, respectively.
Liberty County, which is fourth in the latest Class AAA state coaches poll, does not play again until Jan. 9 at West Laurens.
Thomson 20 11 20 12-63
Liberty 19 17 18 17-71