Leader Blues

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

SPORTS >> Cabot’s quickness too much for FC girls

By FRED CONLEY
Forrest City Times-Herald

The Cabot girls were just too quick and had too much depth for Forrest City’s Lady Mustangs to overcome Friday night at Mustang Arena.

Cabot improved to 15-3 for the year and 5-0 in the AAAAA-East Conference by taking a 72-55 win over the Lady Mustangs, who fall to 9-6 overall and 2-3 in the conference.

It was the third-straight conference loss for the Lady Mustangs, who are battling to make the state tournament for the first time in more than a decade.

Fifth-ranked Cabot led 20-12 after one period and went into the half with a 35-24 cushion.

Forrest City outscored Cabot 19-18 in the third period and twice got within eight points, but it wasn’t enough as the Lady Panthers led 53-43 to start the fourth.

Cabot senior Kim Sitzmann led the Lady Panthers by scoring 22 points but it was Forrest City sophomore Cassandra Jackson who led all scorers with 28 points.

“Cassandra did all she could do,” said Lady Mustangs coach Jacky England. “But by the fourth period, she was just worn out.”
The biggest difference for Cabot was being able to play eight different Lady Panthers and having all eight contribute in scoring. Forrest City played seven but got points from only four.

Junior center Kesha Stovall was the only other Forrest City player to finish in double figures, hitting 12 points. LaShunda Rogers added nine points and junior guard Fareedah Wash-ington was held to just six points.

Maddie Helms finished with 14 points for Cabot while Lindsey Watts had nine and Jamie Sterrenberg and Leah Watts had seven points each.

The Lady Panthers were 10 of 13 from the foul line while Forrest City converted six of their free throws.
The Lady Panthers lead the conference at 5-0, and are followed by Mountain Home at 4-1, West Memphis, 3-2, Sylvan Hills, 3-2, Searcy, 2-3, Forrest City, 2-3, Jonesboro, 2-3 and Jacksonville is 0-5.

Forrest city 49 cabot boys 37

Talk about overcoming obstacles and bucking the odds.

Friday night at Mustangs Arena the Forrest City Mustangs did both to post their 14th win of the season, a 49-37 win over the Cabot Panthers. The win also keeps the Mustangs in second place in the AAAAA-East with a 4-1 record.

They did it without the services of junior starting forward Stephon Weaver, who suffered an injury in the second period and did not return, and they did it by overcoming one of their worst shooting nights in quite some time.

After scoring 15 points in the opening period, the Mustangs went stone cold in the second period, hitting just one of 11 shots from the floor and scoring just two points.

Ironically, the one field goal was by Weaver, his only points of the night, before a Cabot player stepped on his foot, possibly causing a hyper-extended type injury to Weaver’s big toe.

Cabot wasn’t much better from the field in the second, hitting only two of their 14 shots from the floor and dropping in two free throws to stay within three points of at the half, 17-14.

The game’s pace and intensity picked up in the second half when the Mustangs put 32 points on the board. While the production from the floor was still bordering on anemic, the Mustangs made up for it at the foul line, hitting 13 of 16 free throws to take a 32-22 lead to start the fourth period.

“That’s what we had to do,” Lofton said. “Once we got that lead and they had to start fouling in the fourth, we had to step up and knock down our free throws.”

Cabot, who did not shoot well from the floor either, managed to slice the Forrest City lead to 32-26 with under seven minutes to play in the fourth period, but that was as close as the Panthers would get.

Cabot got 10 points from 6-9 senior center Chad Glover in the fourth period, but beyond Glover, the Panthers’ offense was almost nonexistent.

Two free throws by Jarvis Palmer put the Mustangs in front by 12 points with 2:49 to play.

Palmer struck again with two more free throws with 1:45 to play, giving the Mustangs a 14- point cushion at 45-31.
Forrest City’s Michael Alston connected for the Mustangs’ final two field goals late in the game.

The Mustangs finished by hitting 13 of their 43 shots from the floor and converting 15 of 22 from the foul line. Cabot was just 5 of 6 from the free-throw line.

Kelson Stewart recorded his first double double of the season, leading the Mustangs with 16 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.
Palmer finished with 11 points while Marcus Britt had 10 and Heath King, who filled in when Weaver was forced to leave the game, finished with five points.

“Heath did not play well last week when we faced Jonesboro but I had already made up my mind that I was going to use him,” Lofton said. “He may have hit the biggest shot of the night when Cabot made their run in the fourth and cut the lead to six. He stepped up and hit that big three from the corner, which gave us a boost. He is a good option for us off the bench.”

Glover led Cabot, 13-5 and 2-3, with 14 points while Matt Lowry finished with seven. No other Cabot player had more than four points.

Each team had 10 turnovers.

The Panthers hosted Sylvan Hills Tuesday and will host Jonesboro Friday. Forrest City hosted Mountain Home Tues-day and will make a road trip to Sylvan Hills on Friday.

As of Friday night, the standings in the boys division has Jonesboro in first place at 5-0, followed by Forrest City at 4-1, Jacksonville at 3-2, Sylvan Hills 3-2, Searcy 2-3, Cabot 2-3, West Memphis 1-4 and Mountain Home at 0-5.