DALE – Things got off to a slow start Tuesday for Dale (2-0), but flipped after the half to put up a 45-33 win at home against 0-1 Latta.
The Lady Pirates barely edged out a 9-8 lead by the conclusion of the first, thanks to a 3-pointer by Taylor Thompson. All of Dale's first quarter points came in treys by Thompson, Lacey Savage and Claire Chastain, while the Lady Panthers went 8-of-9 from the free throw line for all of their first quarter points.
Thompson drained another three to start the second and, trailing 14-13 with 2:19 left in the half, dropped her third shot from behind the arc of the night. She finished the evening with 14 points on four 3-pointers and two free throws.
The girls rallied with an 8-0 run through the first four minutes of the third to take a 26-14 lead and moved ahead 34-20 by the end of the third, as both teams went scoreless for the final 1:20 of the quarter.
Latta shortened the gap in the final two minutes of the game, outscoring Dale 12-3 as the game came to a close.
“We've gotta be better there in the last two and a half or three minutes. It goes from a 20 point lead to a 10 point lead in a minute and a half. We've got to be better there when we sub in,” coach Josh Forsythe said.
Chastain led the Lady Pirates with 15 point on the night and was 3-3 from the line. Dani Manning dropped five points, Savage put up four and the team went 10-14 from the courtesy line.
Forsythe likes what he has seen to start the season against two tough teams in Preston and Latta.
“Any time that you beat Preston and Latta, they're great wins... Any time you're 2-0 against those two, that's good,” he said. “And it's been two good games for us that we can kind of learn from and pull things from on both sides of the ball.”
The Lady Pirates will be in action Friday in their first road game at Amber-Pocasset.