The Pickens Dragonettes and Dragons had tough matchups against the White County Lady Warriors and the Warriors on Friday night, and in the end both the Nettes and the Dragons came up on the losing end of the entertaining battles.
The first matchup of the evening featured the Nettes and the Lady Warriors in a game that was expected to be highly contested, but unfortunately proved to be far from it. The first quarter of action would set the pace for the entire game; the Dragonettes struggled to put points up on the board, falling behind 10-2 to start a quarter that would witness White hit three-pointers practically at will and eventually outscore Pickens 19-6.
Down by thirteen at the start of the second quarter, sloppy and undisciplined play by Pickens hindered the team once again, and White’s ability to hit shot after shot down low prevented the Dragonettes from making a considerable comeback of any kind. At halftime the Lady Warriors led the game 37-15, leaving Pickens in need of some adjustments in the second half.
The situation went from bad to worse for the Dragonettes in the third quarter, as the Nettes were unable to score at all until there was only 2:12 left in the quarter. Pickens was able to post five additional points following this shot, but they were outscored 14-7 in the third quarter, leaving the team in a 51-22 hole going into the fourth.
Once again, the Lady Warriors’ shots down low were absolutely too much for the Dragonettes to handle on this night, and although the Dragonettes eventually outscored the Lady Warriors 14-12 in the final quarter, White would win the game 63-36.
Haley Kalson had a solid game against the Lady Warriors, leading the Nettes with 10 points. Kalson also posted three rebounds, one assists, and two steals in the loss.
Sarah Smith did her part to keep Pickens competitive in this outing, scoring nine points with a team-high seven rebounds. Freshman Autumn Young may not have started this game, but her play was very impressive when she was on the court, finishing with seven points, one rebound, one assist, and one steal.
With the girls’ game now in the books, the Warriors and the Dragons took to the court to see who would prevail on this night. Pickens utilized White’s foul issues in the first quarter, forcing the Warriors to reach the dreaded “bonus” before the opening period of play had ended. Unfortunately for the Dragons, foul shooting would be a problem throughout this game, and although it would be a minor issue early, it would be prevalent in all four quarters.
The first quarter looked ready to end with White leading 15-13, but the Dragons had other ideas. Shannon Brooks found Tylar Urlaub in the closing seconds, leaving Urlaub just enough time to drain a three-pointer to put Pickens up 16-15.
White opened the second quarter on a very impressive run, outscoring Pickens 9-2 in dominating fashion. The Dragons were not ready to simply give in, instead countering with a 10-9 run that left the home squad down by the manageable score of 35-29.
Foul troubles and rebounding issues were problematic for the Dragons in the third period, and although Pickens was able to post twelve points in the quarter, White managed fifteen points of its own, giving the Warriors a 50-41 lead going into the fourth.
Pickens practically held serve with White in the first three quarters, but the Warriors’ rebounding became too much to keep up with in the final period, leading to the Warriors outscoring the Dragons 15-10 en route to a 65-51 victory.
Dylan Curry had an impressive outing against the Warriors, finishing the game with a team-high ten points. Curry also posted four rebounds in the defeat.
Tanner Brumby overcame an injury scare in the third quarter to have a solid game for Pickens, scoring seven points in the game. Brumby also had a team-high seven rebounds along with three assists and one steal.
Pickens did a commendable job at finding the open players throughout the game and not simply giving one player all of the shooting opportunities, and this showed up in the statistics: five different Dragons--Curry, Brumby, Brooks, Clay Wigington, and Dalton Bruce--scored at least five points in the game.
The Dragons and Dragonettes’ faced off with Excel Christian Academy on Saturday to the tune of two victories for Pickens and will have their next set of games on Tuesday, when they play the Dawson County Tigers and Lady Tigers at Pickens High School. The girls’ matchup will start at 6:00 p.m.