Grainger Today Correspondent
MORRISTOWN – In basketball action last week, the Rutledge Middle School Lady Pioneers posted an easy 53-8 victory at Meadowview, Tuesday, and then battled from behind to defeat the visiting East Ridge Lady Bears 47-36 in a game played at the Rutledge gym, Thursday.
The game against the outmatched Lady Vikings from Meadowview was never in doubt. Two baskets by Audrey Stratton and a three-point play by Millie Hurst staked the Lady Pioneers to a 7-0 lead. From that point, the winner was clear. The only question to be answered was what Rutledge’s winning margin would be. After the Lady Vikings scored a basket, the Lady Pioneers picked up a basket and a free throw from Abby Crowe, and baskets from Gracie Jarnagin and Katie Williams accounted for the 14-2 lead after the first quarter. In the second quarter, Sydnie Hayes opened the scoring with a basket, and three baskets by Hurst contributed the Lady Pioneer’s 22-2 lead. After a basket by Meadowview, Rutledge then received a basket from Stratton and two free throws from Jarnagin to hold a 26-4 halftime lead.
Stratton, who opened the second half with a three-point play, added four more points, while the Lady Pioneers acquired four points from Katie Williams and two points each from Caylee Phifer, Alia Maloney and Stratton to hold a 43-8 lead heading into the final quarter. In the fourth, which featured a running clock under the mercy rule, the Lady Pioneers collectedt four points each from Hayes and Hurst and a basket from Maloney to complete the 53-8 victory.
Millie Hurst, with 15, and Audrey Stratton, with 12, led the Lady Pioneer scoring that included six points each for Katie Williams, Sydnie Hayes and Gracie Jarnagin. In addition, Abby Crowe added three points and Caylee Phifer added two for the final total.
Lady Pioneers 47, East Ridge 36
RUTLEDGE – The Lady Pioneers returned to the Rutledge gym Thursday night to take on the Lady Bears of East Ridge. East Ridge scored the first seven points of the game before the Lady Pioneers got a pair of free throws from Millie Hurst and baskets by Abby Crowe and Gracie Jarnagin to cut the Lady Bear lead to 7-6.
After a Lady Bear basket, Rutledge received baskets from Audrey Stratton and Alia Maloney to take a brief 10-9 lead.
After East Ridge retook the lead at 12-0, Crowe connected on a deuce to knot the score at 12-all after the first quarter of play.
The second quarter opened with a deuce from Maloney and a pair of free throws from Crowe which were countered by three baskets from the Lady Bears, who took an 18-16 lead. Two points each from Jarnagin and Hurst and a free throw from Jarnagin gave the Lady Pioneers a 21-20 lead before East Ridge scored the final four points of the half for a 24-21 lead.
The second half opened with two free throws and a trey from Crowe as the Pioneers reclaimed the lead at 26-24. That was followed by a basket from Maloney and two baskets from Stratton which opened a 32-26 Rutledge lead. After the Lady Bears cut the Rutledge lead to 32-30, the Lady Pioneers got one basket each from Hurst and Caylee Phifer to open a 36-30 lead. A free throw and a basket sent the game into the fourth quarter with the Pioneers holding a 36-33 lead.
A deuce and a three-point play by Jarnigan opened the final quarter and gave Rutledge some breathing room as well as a 41-33 lead.
With the Lady Bears fouling in an attempt to get back into the game, the Lady Pioneers scored the final six points from the foul line which secured a 47-36 win.
The Lady Pioneer balanced-scoring effort was led by Abby Crowe, who totaled 13 points. She was followed by Gracie Jarnagin with 10, Millie Hurst with eight, Audrey Stratton with seven and Alia Maloney with six. In addition, Caylee Phifer added two points and Raelin Madon, one. The Rutledge Middle School basketball teams next game will be Thursday, December 7, when they host Maury Middle School at the Pioneer gym.