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December 11, 2013

WALLACE STATE BASKETBALL: Lady Lions flirt with 100-point plateau in easy win, men lose heartbreaker in closing seconds

HANCEVILLE — A week after posting 100 points, Wallace State’s women nearly matched the feat again Tuesday night, rolling to a 97-35 victory over Motlow (Tenn.) State at Tom Drake Coliseum.

The Lady Lions opened the night’s doubleheader with the blowout before the Wallace State men lost a heartbreaker in the finale. Motlow State’s Kytrel Williams rebounded a failed 3-point attempt in the closing seconds, and his game-winning  putback helped the Bucks escape with a 65-64 victory. 

In the opener, Wallace State’s women (7-2) had no trouble putting the Lady Bucks away early. Wallace State scooted out to a 13-0 advantage less than six minutes into the game and also maintained leads of 21-3 and 27-10. The Lady Lions held  a 47-10 cushion at the half.

Wallace State women’s coach Ron Burdette has focused on making his roster deeper and more athletic over the last two offseasons, and the fruits of his labor are apparent. The Lady Lions finished the night with another balanced scoring attack,  receiving strong contributions from both starters and bench players.

Five Wallace State players finished with double figures. Freshman Morgan Smith led the way with 15 points and nine rebounds, Jaylan Snowden finished with 11 points and four assists, and Jasmine Coleman collected a double-double, scoring 13 points and grabbing 10 boards. Haven Albright and Ashley Rodgers scored 12 points apiece off the bench.

“We’re starting to gain more and more confidence with each game we play. Some freshmen who weren’t playing well early on are really starting to gain confidence,” said Burdette, who’s in his third season with the program. “Our defense was really good in this game, but I think the thing I like the most about our team is we don’t have a go-to scorer. Jaylan Snowden is our leader, but she’s not necessarily always the leader in the box score. You never know with this group. That makes it very hard  to prepare for us and should pay dividends for us come February. We won’t have to play just six or seven girls about 36 minutes a game.”

Amber Carey added seven points off the bench for Wallace State, while DeAndrea Carter and Kaneisha Mixon each scored five.



% Motlow State 65, Wallace State 64:
Kytrel Williams’ layup in heavy traffic with 1.5 seconds remaining capped off an exciting win for the Bucks in the nightcap.

Motlow State controlled the game’s final possession with 16.6 seconds remaining. The Bucks’ Terrell Savala misfired long on a 3-pointer from the right corner, but Williams corralled the rebound, drew a Wallace State defender in the air with a pump fake and converted the putback.

Wallace State’s Marcus Johnson had his long heave from across the court fall short as time expired, and the Lions dropped their second straight home game.

Wallace State (7-4) briefly controlled a 64-63 lead with 17.3 seconds remaining after X-keem Jones nailed a 3-pointer from the top of the key. Motlow State had the final blow, however, with Williams’ heroics.

Wallace State’s Cody Farley paced the Lions in the loss with 17 points. Freshman Lee Moore scored 15 points, and Jones and Johnson added nine points apiece.

The final 20 minutes were nip and tuck. Both teams controlled no more than a five-point cushion, and there were 13 lead changes and four ties.

Jordan Riley’s runner in the lane for Motlow State broke a 56-56 tie with 2:12 remaining. The Bucks extended their advantage to 61-56 with 1:21 left before Wallace State battled back and reclaimed the lead thanks to 3-pointers by Moore and Jones. Motlow State then took advantage of its final chance.

The Bucks held a slight 28-26 edge at the half.

Wallace State’s women will travel to Andalusia on Thursday to play L.B. Wallace at 5:30 p.m.

Both Wallace State teams will return home Saturday. The men will host Georgia Highlands College at 1 p.m., followed by the women’s game vs. Faulkner State at 3 p.m.

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