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Lady Eagles slam Trinity, 72-41, gain needed confidence

Porters Chapel Academy’s Brittany White loses control of the ball as Trinity’s Laura Jo Hurt, left, and Megan Jennings put on the pressure during PCA’s 72-41 win on Thursday night. (C. Todd ShermanThe Vicksburg Post)

It had been a long time since the Porters Chapel Academy Lady Eagles were involved in a game like Thursday night’s against Trinity.

Granted, it wasn’t against the same Trinity team that beat PCA in last year’s South State tournament, and the Lady Saints showed little resemblance to the team that was one of the best in the state over the last three seasons.

It was still too long for the Lady Eagles since they had looked like the team that was one of the best in the state for nearly a decade.

PCA (22-5) dominated every phase of the game, from the tip to the final buzzer, and hammered Trinity 72-41.

The Lady Eagles never trailed, shot 52 percent from the floor, and outrebounded the Lady Saints 33-13. Nine different Lady Eagles scored, and PCA outscored Trinity (6-12) in every quarter.

Brittany Willis led PCA with 22 points, Brady Willis added 18, and Jessica Lord had eight points and five rebounds off the bench.

Freshman Mallory Archer led trinity with 20 points and Holly Hall added 15.

“We’ve needed that to boost our confidence … We’ve played a lot of teams we should have beaten that bad and haven’t,” said PCA senior Brittany White, who had six points and nine assists.

PCA opened the game with a 10-0 run and never looked back. Playing some of their best basketball of the season, the Lady Eagles didn’t commit a turnover in the first quarter and held the Lady Saints to only five field goal attempts.

Brittany Willis scored 13 points in the first quarter, and PCA opened a 21-4 lead by the end of the period. PCA’s substitutes kept the lead between 20 and 30 points for much of the second half, and Trinity never threatened to get back in the game.

“We shot the ball really well, and they weren’t uncontested shots,” PCA coach Kevin Griffin said. “As a team, that’s as good as I’ve seen them play.”

Trinity lost all but one player from a team that was together for three seasons and finished as the South State runner-up last year. Trinity coach Melanie Hall said her team has struggled while the new players mesh, but it made little difference Thursday.

“They’re just better,” Hall said. “I was proud of my kids for not giving up. They could have, but they didn’t.”

(B) Trinity 61, PCA 37

Porters Chapel controlled the game against Trinity for about two minutes.

Trinity (20-4) held PCA scoreless for more than 10 minutes after the Eagles had taken a 4-0 lead, and went on a 27-2 run that put the game away early.

Dudley Guice had a game-high 21 points for Trinity, Chase Brown added 19 points and four steals, and Mike Lickliter had 13 points. Ryan Hoben led PCA (7-13) with 11 points, and Joseph Ivey added 10 points and four blocked shots.

“I thought we did a good job of taking them out of some of their sets,” Griffin said. “Even in a loss it may have been one of the more complete games we’ve played all year, considering the level of competition.”