Lady Rockets clobber Cascade for 3rd straight win
Defense once again carried the day for the Forrest Lady Rockets (9-7), as they defeated former district rival Cascade 63-38 on Tuesday, Dec. 29, at the Eagleville Christmas Classic to notch their third straight victory over the Lady Champions (0-11).
The Lady Rockets held a 24-15 lead at the break before pulling away in the second half by outscoring Cascade 39-22 over the final two quarters to extend their current winning streak to three games.
Forrest struggled to find their shooting touch the entire afternoon and shot just 30 percent (21-of-71) from the field overall while making only 1-of-24 attempts from beyond the arc. The Lady Rockets compensated for their poor shooting by knocking down 20-of-28 free throws, committing only 11 turnovers, and outrebounding the Lady Champions 36-26, which included a 22-5 edge on the offensive glass.
Junior shooting guard Caitlyn Yost poured in a game high 19 points on 7-of-14 shooting to lead Forrest. Kyleah Hengesbach, Madison Curtis, and Grace Thrasher tallied eight points apiece for the Lady Rockets, while Tamia Northcutt added five points.
Defense runs show
After holding Page to 25 points in their last outing, Forrest turned in another strong defensive performance and limited Cascade to just 10 field goals on 42 percent shooting while recording 24 steals en route to forcing 37 Lady Champion turnovers.
"Our defense fueled our offense and I'm okay with that. It's better for your defense to fuel your offense than the other way around," FHS coach Jeremy Jean said.
Reserve forward Haleigh Crouch knocked down 4-of-6 shots and paced Cascade with 14 points, while Shaina Schneider tallied 12 points and nine rebounds.
The Lady Champions inched out to an early 3-2 lead before the Lady Rockets went on an 11-4 run behind five points from Yost and a Northcutt three-point play to claim a 13-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.
After Crouch hit a jumper at the start of the second period to cut the deficit to 13-9, Forrest outscored Cascade 11-4 over the next six minutes with the help of four points from Grace Thrasher and baskets from Curtis and Sydney Hill to open up a 24-13 advantage.
Schneider scored on a layup in the closing seconds of the first half to close the gap to 24-15, but the Lady Rockets opened the third quarter with a 9-0 spurt on the strength of four points from Yost to stretch their lead to 33-15.
"We started the game lethargic, but we picked it up in the second half and played the way we're capable of playing. It was more so defensively than offensively," said Jean.
Crouch nailed a three to trim the deficit to 33-18, before Forrest reeled off six straight points on a Yost jumper and a pair of layups by Hengesbach to forge a 39-18 advantage with 2:27 left in the third period.
Cascade tallied the next six points to narrow the gap to 39-24, but the Lady Rockets delivered the knockout blow by putting together a 16-3 run thanks to six points from Yost and four points apiece from Curtis and Thrasher to push their lead to 55-27 midway through the fourth quarter before coasting to the 63-38 victory.
Forrest: 13 11 23 16-63
Cascade: 7 8 11 12-38
Forrest: Caitlyn Yost 19, Kyleah Hengesbach 8, Madison Curtis 8, Grace Thrasher 8, Tamia Northcutt 5, Sydney Hill 3, Emma Stacey 3, Katey Harmon 3, Dani Hoeft 2, Krista Chapman 2, Haily Collins 2.
Cascade: Haleigh Crouch 14, Shaina Schneider 12, Juli Jones 5, Grace Jackson 3, Bailey Ledbetter 2, Kylee Freeman 2.
Three-point goals: Forrest (1): Stacey; Cascade (2): Crouch, Jackson.
Halftime score: Forrest 24, Cascade 15.