ROCKINGHAM — From start to finish, the Temple Christian girls basketball team dominated Monday night’s home game versus conference foe Columbus Christian Academy — wreaking havoc on defense and scoring basket after basket on offense.
It was freshman guard Anna Smith who got off to a hot start, scoring 12 of her 16 points in the opening period, but her sister, Mary, finished with a game-high 24 points to lead the Lady Tigers to a 64-31 victory.
Defensively, Temple (15-0, 10-0 CCAA) came out the gate with a heavy dose of pressure at the top of its zone and the Lady Pacers ended up committing a number of turnovers early, which resulted in points for the home team. Anna, Mary and Rachel Smith were the only three Temple players to score in the first eight minutes.
And the Lady Tigers held a 23-2 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Columbus (8-6, 4-5 CCAA) didn’t score much more in the second quarter, only making two more field goals before halftime, but did pick things up in the third period — where Abigail Bullock hit back-to-back threes to highlight the team’s 11-point quarter.
Bullock finished the night with 21 points to lead the away team’s scoring effort. Her third make from downtown swished through the net as the final seconds ticked off the clock. The only other Lady Pacer to score was Ellie McPherson (10 pts).
Temple’s Rachel Smith knifed through the lane and made back-to-back layups in the fourth quarter to record her final two buckets, giving her 16 points and tying her with Anna Smith for second-best on the night. Freshman guard Anna Richmond chipped in four points, while senior forward Lydia Bond and freshman forward Laura Richmond each finished with two.
TEMPLE EXPLODES FOR 53 IN 1ST HALF
ROCKINGHAM — The Tigers raced out to a 32-point lead in the first half and never looked back Monday evening, defeating Columbus Christian 72-46 in their first of three games this week.
Junior center Josh Greene controlled the paint early and bullied his way to 24 points in the first 16 minutes of play, scoring more points by himself than the Pacers were able to record as a team in the opening half.
There were a few Greene baskets in the second quarter that came courtesy of sophomore guard Hayden Heavner, who tossed the big man a few alley-oop assists after getting past his defender. Heavner notched seven points in the second period, knocking down two floaters and a three-pointer before sitting out the rest of the game.
Due to his team’s 53-21 lead at halftime, head coach Broderick Hair decided to go with the reserves in the second half.
Although the Tigers’ bench didn’t score as much and gave up more points than the starters did, Temple was able to hold on to a double-digit advantage. Coming off the bench to add to the team’s scoring total were eighth-grader Noah Carpenter (2 pts) and seventh-graders Manasseh Collins (2), Mason Iacovone (2) and Trey Smith (5).
Columbus (0-14, 0-8 CCAA) had junior forward Chandler Green take care of the scoring during the early part of the conference matchup and then saw junior guard Josh Fleming carry the load. Fleming’s high energy helped him net a team-high 21 points while Green finished with 15.
Temple (5-8, 4-6 CCAA) got 29 points from Greene, 12 from Heavner and 11 from junior forward Dylon Goodwin. Fifth-grader Bobby Little hit two three-pointers in the win and eighth-grade guard Malik Green made one from deep.
Reach sports editor Leon Hargrove Jr. by phone at 910-817-2673 or by email at [email protected] For stories, scores and updates, follow the Daily Journal’s sports section on Twitter @RCDailySports.