By Larry Lamb
CROCKETT – Crockett Lady Bulldogs hammered Westwood, 70-18, on Tuesday but saw their four-game win streak snapped by No. 2 ranked Fairfield, 87-23, on Friday.
In a Tuesday night road game, the Lady Dogs came out smoking on both ends of the court and outscored Westwood by 18 in the first quarter.
“We jumped out of the starting gate, got some early steals and outscored them 22-4,” said coach TaNesiah Johnson.
The Lady Bulldogs didn’t let up in the second quarter as they rattled off a 26-2 run to take a commanding 60-6 halftime lead.
“I tried to balance it out and give my first group resting time while at the same time allowing our bench to get into the game,” said Johnson. “But we still had things we needed to work on in preparation for Fairfield. I informed the ladies that the same fire we started off with against Westwood is the fire that we need to have versus every team we play.”
The Lady Dogs were led by another double-double performance from junior Tocarra Johnson, who booked 24 points and 15 rebounds.
Freshman Tania Davis followed with 19 points and sophomore A'Nayah Wooten recorded her first double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Senior Keaton Crabtree chipped in 5 and junior La'Kyriah Hamilton had 4.
“I sound like a broken record, but if we can continue to have three in double figures every game we will be exactly where we want to be. We must have that same fire with three in double figures when we play the top-tier teams in our district,” said Johnson.
After an impressive win over Westwood, Johnson was optimistic that her team would make a strong showing against the visiting Lady Eagles, who boast a 26-1 record.
"We just didn't play. We didn't show up. We were intimidated from the very start," said Johnson. "We matched up the girls and told them who they had. We even changed our jump ball defense to help us out and Fairfield scored a layup to start the game. We just weren't there -- mentally or physically."
Fairfield was in control 38-4 after a quarter and 55-6 at the half. Crockett's bright spot was in the fourth quarter it outscored the guests, 15-13.
"We scored 23 points not playing and had we played we'd have scored in the 40s at least," said Johnson, noting that Teague was the only team in the district able to score more than 40 on Fairfield. "Franklin only scored 17 on them, Westwood had 11 and both Buffalo and Elkhart only scored in single digits."
Tocarra Johnson was Crockett's only double-digit scorer with 11 points. "My big girl should have easily had 20 or 30," said the coach.
Tania Davis scored 8, while Wooten and senior Chelsea Walker managed to score just 2 apiece. "A'Nayah should have had at least 10 and Tania usually scores 10 to 12," noted Johnson.
The coach complimented Walker's defensive play.
"Chelsea stepped up tremendously on defense. She shut No. 20 (Shadasia Brackens) down to 10 points in the first half and no points in the second half," said Johnson, adding that Brackens was held to two field goals in the first half and picked up six points at the line.
The Lady Bulldogs only hit 9 of 19 free throws.
"If we had hit the 10 shots that we missed at the line, that's 33 points right there. Then you add the layups that we missed and that gets us into the 40s," said Johnson, noting that Fairfield made 23 of 34 freebies. “That was a huge difference right there.”
Another disparity was the number of turnovers. Crockett had 29 turnovers to Fairfield’s 9.
Fairfield’s only loss this season was to class 4A Waco LaVega, 51-47. Since then, the Lady Eagles (26-1) have reeled off 24 straight wins.
“We can’t dwell on this game too long since we have to get ready to play Teague here on Tuesday and then go to Franklin on Friday,” said Johnson, whose team sits at 4-3 in district.
Next week, Crockett has back-to-back home games against Elkhart on Tuesday and Groesbeck on Friday.