Home / News and Information / News - March 2005 / Lady Barons top Shorter in SSAC first-round game
Lady Barons top Shorter in SSAC first-round game
The Brewton-Parker College Lady Barons overcame offensive struggles once again with a solid defensive effort, forcing 31 Shorter College turnovers in scoring a 77-58 win Thursday night in the first round of the Southern States Athletic Conference women's basketball postseason tournament at Berry College in Mount Berry.
The win, the Lady Barons' third over Shorter in as many tries this season, advances No. 2 seeded Brewton-Parker (31-2) into Friday's 6 p.m. semifinal against Reinhardt College. The No. 6 seeded Lady Eagles (22-10) edged tournament host and No. 3 seed Berry 59-54.
For the first time against Shorter, however, the Lady Barons turned in a dominant first half, leading 42-25 at the halftime break.
"We struggled getting out of the gate at home and last Saturday at Rome against them, and this time we came out focused and I felt like we were very prepared," said Brewton-Parker coach Sheila Simmons, who before the tournament was named SSAC Women's Coach of the Year after her team's 18-2, second-place conference finish.
As a team, Brewton-Parker made just 36.4 percent of its shots from the floor but had some individual success with five players reaching double figures in scoring.
Junior guard Tori Williams of Valdosta came off the bench to hit 5 of 7 shots with 2 of 3 3-pointers falling to set the Lady Barons' offensive pace with 15 points, while junior guard-forward Tamika Drinks of Mount Vernon was 5-for-9 from the floor with 12 points.
Other double-figure scorers were junior guard Ashley Little of Lawrenceville with 14, junior guard Dannisha Winfrey of Paterson, N.J., with 13 and senior forward Crystal McNeil with 11.
Drinks set the defensive pace with six of the Lady Barons' 19 steals along with a team-high four blocked shots. McNeil was the top rebounder with nine and also had three blocks.
"Tamika and Dannisha were very focused defensively, and Crystal stepped up too, which she hadn't for several games," Simmons said. "Our bench scoring really helped us big time."
Shorter (14-16) was limited to 37.3 percent shooting success and got a team-high 14 points from senior forward-post Laketa Riddle with 12 from senior post Kerri Sparks.
Friday's other semifinal, at 8 p.m., has No. 1 seeded North Georgia College and State University (23-7) against No. 4 Lee University (23-10). Semifinal winners meet in the championship game Saturday at 6 p.m.
The best means of maintaining updates with SSAC tournament action over the weekend will be by logging on to www.ssacsports.com.