PINE GROVE– The North Pontotoc Lady Vikings (7-1) struggled to get anything going offensively and fell to 3-time defending Class 1A state champion Pine Grove 50-34 on Friday, November 22 to drop their first game of the season. The Lady Panthers pressured North defensively the entire game, and after Shemiah Hadley exited with an injury and Maddie Guerin was slowed by one herself the Lady Vikings struggled to score.
“I thought we did well enough defensively to slow them down,” said North head coach Matt Waldrop. “Offensively we caved to their physicality and their style of play, especially after Shemiah and Maddie were hurt.”
Macey Thomas tied the game early on with a 3-pointer to make it 3-3. Riley Mitchell followed with a layup and a free throw to give the Lady Vikings an early lead, but Pine Grove scored six unanswered and led 11-8 at the end of the first quarter. Macey Thomas flushed a layup to keep things close early in the second quarter, but Pine Grove outscored North the rest of the way and led 24-16 at halftime.
Pine Grove held the Vikings to two field goals in the third quarter and stretched their lead to 42-24. Even though the Lady Vikings outscored the Lady Panthers in the fourth quarter they were hobbled offensively, and it was too little too late.
“Having two of our best scorers out and struggling due to injury really hurt us,” said coach Waldrop. “I thought Macey played well enough. It was just a bad night for us in the woods at Pine Grove.”
Macey Thomas and Maddie Guerin both had 9 points apiece, and Riley Mitchell scored 8 points for the Lady Vikings.
The North girls bounced back last Tuesday with a 52-50 road win at Myrtle to improve to 7-1 on the year.