Prep Basketball: Statesville girls 82, Carson 31

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 23, 2009

By Steve Huffman
CHINA GROVE ó Carson head coach Brooke Misenheimer thought her team was heading in the right direction after getting its first league win Thursday night.
But the Cougars didn’t get to celebrate long after suffering an 82-31 thrashing at the hands of North Piedmont Conference frontrunner Statesville on Friday night.
The Greyhounds (15-2, 12-0) thoroughly dominated Carson, who beat Northewst Cabarrus a night earlier, racing out to an 18-point lead in the first quarter and pulling ahead by as many as 54 points midway through the fourth quarter.
“We knew that they were going to be a tough team,” said Misenheimer, whose Cougars (2-15, 1-11). “We wanted to come in and compete, be disciplined and do what we do well, and just get better. That didn’t happen.”
Keyed by Clemson signee Keyrra Gillespie, Statesville’s defense forced Carson into 41 turnovers (31 off steals), leading to 40 unanswered points.
That also allowed the Greyhounds to outshoot the Cougars by more than a 3-to-1 margin. Statesville hit 36 of 84 from the field (42.9 percent), while holding Carson to just 9 of 29 (31 percent).
Jazzmin Brown led Carson with 15 points.
“They pressured us, and we didn’t respond well,” Misenheimer said. “We really put ourselves in bad position to get trapped, and we didn’t rebound well ó in all, we didn’t play the way I wanted us to play.”
While all eyes were on Gillespie, it was her teammates who provided most of the scoring.
Brooke Bradley led five Greyhounds players in double figures with 17 points.
And Gillespie? Try 12 points, eight assists (and a half-dozen others blown because of missed shots), seven steals and five rebounds ó and that was after sitting out the fourth quarter.
“She’s very much a pass-first point guard,” Misenheimer said of Gillespie. “She likes to get her team involved, and she sets her teammates up. She only scores when she needs to.
“They’re a team that works very well together. … It’s hard for our girls to not get intimidated by a team like this. We wanted to compete and improve, and we didn’t do that. There’s definitely a lot we can learn from this, for sure.”
statesville (82) ó B. Bradley 17, Williams 13, Bailey 13, Gillespie 12, Jones 11, Sherrill 8, J. Bradley 4, Smith 2, Caldwell 2. carson (31) ó Brown 15, K. Livengood 6, Marshall 5, Khan 2, M. Livengood 2, Heggins 1, Ciscel, Sellers, Settlemyer, Meismer, Monroe.
Statesville 22 21 27 12 ó 82
Carson 4 8 7 12 ó 31