Demarco Moore, Sports Writer MANCHESTER, Tenn. — The score was 6-6 after one quarter between Westwood Middle and Middle Tennessee Christian School on Thursday night inside Joel Vinson Gymnasium. Westwood had hoped to get a few easy baskets going with a full court press, but when that didn’t work out, plan B went into effect: take away Sarah Wishiowski, the Lady Cougars’ biggest threat inside the paint. “We had to shift to plan B: half court man, keep one of my girls behind her all the time,” said Westwood head coach Angela Houck. “If the guard just happened to be on that side, sink off your girl and try to double team her.”
The strategy paid off, as Wishiowski was limited to six points in the Lady Rockets’ dominating 37-16 win. “Anna Johnson did great coming off the bench. Kennedy [Young] and Alex [Nelson] played really strong underneath the basket, too,” added Houck. Kasen Holt and Elizabeth Brown helped the Lady Rockets (4-3 overall) pull away in the second quarter with their shooting from beyond the arc. Brown knocked down a go-ahead 3-pointer, giving the Lady Rockets an 11-8 lead. Holt went on to score the next eight points for Westwood, draining back-to-back 3-pointers, followed by a driving layup. Haidyn Campbell beat the halftime buzzer with a jump shot, and the Lady Rockets held a comfortable 21-10 lead at halftime that got up to as much as 23 points in the second half. “I want to say it’s like that all the time, but shooters – especially in middle school – can be streaky,” Houck explained. Tonight was a good night.” Holt led the team with 11 points, nine in that big first half, while Brown finished with 10 points, as the two combined to hit all four 3-pointers for the Lady Rockets. WMS stats: Kasen Holt – 11, Elizabeth Brown – 10, Alex Nelson – 4, Kennedy Young – 4, Haidyn Campbell M.T.C.S. 42, Rockets 32 Will Partin’s 12-point performance wasn’t enough to help the Westwood boys’ basketball team come from behind against MTCS Thursday night, as the Cougars dropped the Rockets 42-32. Westwood (4-3 overall), which lost its second-straight game, spent the whole night fighting a deficit, as the Cougars took an early 4-0 lead. MTCS only led 12-10 after the first quarter, but turnovers mounted for the Rockets as the Cougars would eventually stretch their lead to 23-14 by halftime.
“We did not do the little things that we must to compete at that level,” said WMS head coach Will Pannell after the game. “We continue to turn the ball over at a rate that’s unacceptable.” The Rockets also struggled from the free-throw line, making only 3-of-10 for the night. “Our free-throw percentage is below acceptable,” added Pannell. Thompson added eight points for the Rockets. WMS stats: Will Partin – 12, Trent Thompson – 8, John Dobson – 6, Brady Nugent – 3, Ian Wheldon – 3 NEXT GAME: at Community on Monday, Nov. 13 (6 p.m.) Coffee County swept at Rockvale tourney Despite holding an 8-6 lead after one quarter, the Coffee County Middle School boys’ basketball team dropped its contest against Walter J. Baird 33-27 at the Rockvale tournament Thursday night. The Red Raiders (1-2 overall) only led for one quarter, as Walter J. Baird took a 15-11 lead at halftime, then pushed it to 12 points before the beginning of the fourth. Connor Shemwell led the team with nine points on the night. CCMS stats: Connor Shemwell – 9, Aidan Abellana – 6, Kelby Walker – 4, Phinehas Rollman – 4, Ethan Baker – 2, Ruben Alvarez – 2. Christiana 50, Lady Raiders 32 A huge 30-point second half helped Christiana hand the Coffee County girls’ basketball team its first loss of the season in round two of the Rockvale tournament. The Lady Raiders trailed 20-17 before Christiana pulled away for a 50-32 win. Coffee County will face the loser of Stewarts Creek and Siegel on Saturday, Nov. 11 in the third-place game. NEXT GAME: Third-place game (Girls) on Saturday, Nov. 11 at Rockvale. Home versus Warren County (Boys and Girls) on Monday, Nov. 11 (6 p.m.) Reach Demarco Moore at email@example.com, and follow him on Twitter @iam__demo