WSN Lady Eagles beat Excel Friday

Published 9:15 am Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The W.S. Neal Lady Eagle basketball team ended an eight-game losing streak Friday in Excel as they earned a 32-28 win over the Panthers.
With the four-point win, the Lady Eagles improved their overall record to 3-10.
Also Friday, the W.S. Neal B-team Eagles lost to Excel 44-31 to see their record drop to 1-10 and their losing streak increase to seven games. The varsity Eagles dropped an eight-point decision Friday night as they lost to Excel 65-57 to see their losing streak increase to nine games.
“Both teams are learning and growing in multiple ways,” W.S. Neal varsity girls and boys head coach Kason Whitten said. “I see each player grow as each practice and game passes on. As a head coach, you can only hope that your teams continue to progress in a positive direction. As more lessons are learned, we find that there are many more to conquer. Continued confidence in each other, the system, and our abilities associated with the trust that positive things can and will happen, regardless of the apparent obstacles, will eventually bare the desired fruit we seek which is victories. I’m extremely proud of both team’s efforts night in and night out.”
No stats were known as of press time from the B-team game.
All W.S. Neal teams were set to play at Hillcrest-Evergreen Tuesday in an area game and will return home Friday to take on Monroe County in another area game.
The home game Friday for the Eagles will be their first since Dec. 20.

WSN Lady Eagles 32, Excel 28
A big first half for the W.S. Neal Lady Eagles against Excel Friday was the key to their win as they picked up a four-point win, 32-28.
The Lady Eagles led the Panthers 11-2 after the first quarter and 20-5 at the half following a 9-3 advantage in the second quarter.
In the third quarter, Excel outscored the Lady Eagles 12-2 to cut the lead to five points, 22-17, heading into the fourth quarter.
In the fourth, Excel edged out W.S. Neal 11-10 but the Lady Eagles were able to hang on for the win by four.
“We had a powerful start but came out a little slow in third quarter,” Whitten said. “Timely steals and consistent pushing of the ball late kept a good Excel team at bay just long enough for us to fortunately come out with a victory. The Excel young ladies fought very hard and did a great job of fighting back. Again, we were fortunate to make the key necessary plays down the stretch to secure victory.”
KeKe Floyd led the Lady Eagles with 13 points and Mariah Davis added seven in the win.

Excel 65, W.S. Neal varsity Eagles 57
Trailing by 17 points after three quarters, the W.S. Neal varsity Eagles rallied in the fourth quarter before losing to Excel Friday night 65-57.
Excel led W.S. Neal 13-7 after one quarter of play and 30-17 at the half following a 17-10 run in the second quarter.
In the third quarter, Excel increased their lead by four points as they outscored W.S. Neal to lead 24-20 heading into the final quarter of play.
In the fourth, the Eagles rallied with a 20-11 run to cut the lead by nine points before losing by eight, 65-57.
“A late rally was a little too late against a very well coached Excel team,” Whitten said. “Every run we made was answered by a run of Excel. We lost the turnover battle by 11 margin and missed 12 free throws as we lost by eight. We are progressing as I expected at this time of year. We are learning now that the only thing keeping us from more victories is ourselves as we feel that we can play with a lot of teams this year.”
Donovan Millican led the Eagles in the loss with 19 points and Jalen Harrod followed with 14 points.