South Rowan girls 49, Mooresville 42

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 12, 2008

By Bill Kiser
MOORESVILLE ó South Rowan girls coach Jim Brooks knows his Raiders are still a work in progress, but they are closing in on becoming a conference contender.
South showed both sides Friday night, holding off previously unbeaten Mooresville 49-42 to remain within a half-game of league-leading Statesville.
Taylor May scored 19 points for the Raiders (4-1, 3-0 NPC). They won their fourth consecutive game, and Statesville improved to 4-0 in the conference with a victory against West Iredell.Shakira McLaughlin hit four 3-pointers and scored 18 points for Mooresville (2-1, 2-1). It overcame a five-point deficit early to lead twice.
“We were lackadaisical,” Brooks said. “We let them back in it … but we pulled it out. … We settled down and ran the offense and did a better job of that than we did on Tuesday night (during a 69-61 win over Northwest Cabarrus).
“Our kids realize that we’re still improving, and hopefully we’re going to play them a lot better when we play them at (South).”
The Raiders, who shot nearly 42 percent from the field, held Mooresville to 31.5 percent and forced seven turnovers during the decisive fourth quarter.
Down 34-30 in the opening 30 seconds of the period, the Blue Devils got back-to-back buckets from McLaughlin and Leandra Pridgen over a 40-second span to tie the score.
But Krista Haywood followed up her own miss with 5:31 remaining to put South back in the lead, kicking off an 11-3 run that put the Raiders up 45-37 with 1:21 left.
Another South run during the first half kept Mooresville from taking control of the game.
Down 16-11 at the end of the first quarter, the Blue Devils opened with a Jazmin Berryman layup and a McLaughlin 3 to tie the score, then pulled ahead for the first time on a Pridgen jumper with 5:29 left.
Courtney Smith then added back-to-back baskets to give Mooresville a 22-19 margin with 3:42 left.
South’s Libby Sides hit a free throw and a layup to tie the score, and May banked in a pair of layups to put South ahead 26-22 at the break.
NOTES:South’s girls are 3-0 in league play for the first time since the 1998-99 season. Janetta Heggins and Jackie Wood led that team to a 9-1 finish in the CPC and an overall record of 22-5. The Raiders’ only conference title in the last 15 years came during that season. … The Raiders are scheduled to visit Statesville on Monday night for a matchup of NPC unbeatens.
SOUTH ROWAN (49) ó May 19, Graham 7, Goins 6, K.Haywood 5, Sides 5, Garrett 4, Morrow 3, W.Haywood.MOORESVILLE (42) ó McLaughlin 18, Smith 9, Martin 6, Berryman 5, Pridgen 4, Harris, Thomas, Stockton, Sturdivant.S. Rowan 16 10 5 18 ó 49
Mooresville 11 11 8 12 ó 42