DUBLIN — Logan Autry didn’t score a point in the Lady Knights’ opening quarter Friday against visiting West Columbus, but the senior guard carried West Bladen with 19 points the rest of the way — including six of the Lady Knights’ free throws in overtime for a 54-47 non-conference win.
The Lady Knights improved to 4-4 on the season.
The Lady Vikings raced out to a 12-9 lead by the end of the first quarter, then extended that lead to 27-19 by halftime.
But the Lady Knights began whittling away in the second half. Balanced scoring allowed West Bladen to outscore the visitors by a 14-7 margin through the third quarter and cut the gap to 34-33 going into the fourth frame.
That balanced scoring continued down the stretch and the Lady Knights nipped West Columbus 11-10 to knot the game at the end of regulation, 44-44.
In overtime, the Lady Knights canned eight free trows — six by Autry and two by Patience Parker — while Laikyn Pait nailed a bucket to lift West Bladen to a 10-3 verdict and the win.
“We played sluggish in the first half, but much better in the second half,” said West Bladen coach Rick Rhoda. “We had to go to a three-quarters zone press to force turnovers and it got us back in it.
“The free throws in the clutch really stood out though,” he added.
Autry’s 19 points led the Lady Knights and Akira Grimes added 12 points.
Knights win fifth straight
John Bowen and Sayaun Dent each had a double-double for West Bladen and the Knights used a big fourth quarter to knock off visiting West Columbus for a 62-40 non-conference win on Friday.
The Knights’ fifth straight win improves them to 5-2.
Dent canned nine points in the first quarter to pace West Bladen’s 15-10 run through the opening period. That momentum continued as Dent scored seven points, including a three-pointer, and Bowen chipped in with two three-pointers to lead the Knights on a 17-8 run up to halftime and took a 32-18 lead into intermission.
The Knights suffered through a letdown in the third quarter, getting outscored by the Vikings 10-6, but West Bladen still held a 38-28 advantage going into the fourth quarter.
Four three-pointers sparked a 24-point explosion for the Knights, who outscored West Columbus by 12 and sealed the 22-point win. Bowen had two of the three-point bombs, while Dent and Fred Walters each had one.
Dent led the Knights with 25 points and 12 rebounds, while Bowen added 16 points and 16 boards.
W. Curt Vincent can be reached by calling 910-862-4163.