The Lady Purple Hurricanes improved to 17-3 overall and 10-0 in its region with the victory. Adairsville, which is 10-8 overall and 8-2 in its region, is still positioned where it could make some noise after the regular season.
The Lady Canes pressed Adairsville into early turnovers and then benefitted when the Lady Tigers had trouble finding their range from the field. Unlike in their Tuesday game, Cartersville took an early lead and then kept pouring it on.
“We challenged the girls to play a complete game,” head coach Cindy Moore said. “I thought against Sonoraville we came out with focus, but we didn’t maintain it. I was extremely pleased [tonight]. When you score 24 points in the first quarter, you’re ready to go. We did what we needed to do. We had a lot of steals. Our pressure forced some shots from them and we didn’t let them have second shots.”
Cartersville rushed out to a 10-0 lead — scoring its first goal on a second-chance bucket by Maya Jones then two buckets by Hallie Wachsmuth after steals, a bucket and free throw by Kaelyn Irby and a third bucket by Wachsmuth. Adairsville answered in a big way when Stephanie Kuhrt found only net on a 3-pointer to halt the string but couldn’t maintain it as Cartersville used its second 10-0 run of the game to take a 20-3 lead.
Julia Roberson broke that string with her team’s second trey and the scoreboard read 20-6 with 2:02 left in the first frame. Cartersville closed the period with a 4-2 run and held a 24-8 lead.
Adairsville scored the next two buckets on shots by Roberson and Lexi Adams to close to 24-12 in the second frame, but Cartersville then recorded its third 10-0 run on points by Monica Motuba, Morgan Jones, Irby (four) and Asia Murray.
A 3-2 run that favored Cartersville pushed the score to 37-14 at the break.
Adairsville shook off some of its shooting troubles in the third quarter, lighting the scoreboard up for 15 points, two of them once again courtesy of treys by Roberson and Kuhrt.
But the Canes kept their own offensive engine rolling as they scored 17 points, many of them in the post, and moved out to a 54-29 lead after three full periods of play.
Cartersville used a 13-8 run to close out the contest.
Moore said Cartersville relied heavily on its post play and rebounding abilities in grabbing the victory.
“Obviously Morgan stepped in there for us,” Moore said. “Our post play was huge. One of the strengths of our program right now is we have that post-up game. A lot of teams don’t go to that anymore, but we do. We got 37 from the post.
“It was a good team win. I think we outrebounded them. We had quite a few forced turnovers and steals. It was a great region win and a great region win at home.”
Moore said Cartersville now has some breathing room in the region race.
“It’s great to know going into the next two weeks you’ve got a two-game cushion,” Moore said. “Anything can happen, but it certainly feels good to be undefeated at home and be where we need to be to take care of business.”
Kuhrt led the Lady Tigers with 11 points on the evening. Roberson tallied eight points and Mallorie Collum chipped in six points for Adairsville.
Wachsmuth scored 11 points, Irby tacked on nine and Maya Jones added six for Cartersville.
The Lady Canes close with road trips to region foes Coahulla Creek and Gordon Central. They host Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe and North Murray.
Adairsville also has four region games awaiting.
Remaining on its schedule are road visits to Sonoraville and Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe. The Lady Tigers host Ringgold and Coahulla Creek during the final stretch.
Cartersville next plays Tuesday when it visits Coahulla Creek in Dalton. Tipoff is at 6 p.m.
Adairsville returns to the hardwood today, when it hosts Woodland. Tipoff is at 3 p.m.
Gordon Lee 65, Excel 35
Gordon Lee lived up to its reputation and Excel continued to show improvement against the powers in its region in basketball play Friday night.
The Lady Eagles fell, 65-35, to the Lady Trojans on the road.
Andrea Taylor paced the Lady Eagles with 11 points. Bekah Bell dropped eight points for the Excel cause and McKenzie Hobbs contributed seven points.
Excel, which is now 5-14 overall and 3-5 in Region 6A-A, entertains highly regarded Southwest Atlanta Christian today. Tipoff is at 5:30 p.m.