Yost hurt, Lady Rockets still roll over Viqueens
On the night she was honored for scoring her 2,000 point and becoming Forrest's all-time leading scorer, Caitlyn Yost did not play due to a wrist injury that will keep her out until sometime in January.
"Losing Yost affects us because she has been on the floor for four years for me," Forrest coach Jeremy Jean said. "She knows what I want in certain situations, so without her it has to be a collective effort to step up our game."
Yost's Forrest teammates picked her up in big way Friday night, beating the Community Viqueens 56-44 at Chapel Hill to claim their ninth win in a row after an opening season loss to Lincoln County.
"I told the girls Wednesday at practice it was next man up, we have some good players that will have to continue to step up to take up where she would be," Jean said. "It is not going to be just one player that can do that, but they all can elevate their game and together they can get it done and did get it done Friday."
Freshman Jaide Langley stepped it up for a career high 16 points, senior Kyleah Hengesbach had 11 points and juniors Katey Harmon and Madison Curtis chipped in with eight and seven points respectively.
"I think all three of them picked up their game, each in different aspects of the game," Jean stated. "Katey and Madison on the defensive end and knocking down open shots, while Kyleah did a good job at getting us into the offensive flow and distributing the ball to the right person."
Harmon, Langley and eighth-grader Laura Mealer all had four points apiece in the first quarter for the Lady Rockets, who led 16-10 after the first eight minutes of play on the Chapel Hill hardwood.
Community's Erin Thompson, who led the Viqueens in scoring in the contest with 14 points, converted the initial bucket of the second period before Forrest took off on an 11-0 run to lead 27-12.
Langley had five points in the run, including a 3-pointer and Hengesbach added a three-point play the old fashioned way as Forrest looked to blow out the Viqueens.
It was not to be as Community came up with a huge 9-0 run to end the first half, making it a 27-23 contest.
Two Mealer free throws midway through the third period gave Forrest a 10-point lead, but once again Community fought back to cut the lead to six points on two occasions before a late Grace Thrasher rebound and put-back gave the Lady Rockets a 38-30 lead, heading into the fourth quarter.
An AK Lemmons basket for Community opened up the final period scoring before Forrest turned it on again with a back-breaking run as Hengesbach and Langley combined for nine points, extending the Chapel Hill lead to 47-32 with four minutes to play in the game.
That was all Forrest needed as they easily held on to the lead and took the 12-point win.
"I am really pleased at how we fought through some adversity during the game, we would get a big lead and Community would go on a run to close it up and we stayed poised and focused on the next play," Jean said. "That helped us win the game."
Forrest hosted Summertown yesterday in the first of the two annual home and away series games.
The Lady Rockets entertain Eagleville Friday night in the last District 9A contest of the year for Forrest, who will not play another league opponent until they travel to Huntland on January 6, 2017.
"Like I said earlier, we are only focused on the day we are in now, today it's getting better in practice and on Tuesday we will be focused on being 1-0," Jean said. "We will stay focused on the "next play" and we have done a good job since game one on doing that. You can't change what just happened, but you can affect the next play and we want to do that in a positive way."
Jean, who hopes his star player will return for the Huntland game talked about his tutelage of Yost since she came up to the varsity squad as an eighth-grader and went on to become the all-time leading scorer at Chapel Hill.
"It has been fun to watch her grow as a player through the years and to watch her take her game to the next level," Jean said. "It is a great accomplishment and honor to get to this point of being the all-time leading scorer because there have been a lot of great players come through this program in its history."
Community 10 13 7 14-44
Forrest 16 11 11 18-56
Community (44): Erin Thompson 14, AK Lemmons 12, Logan Brothers 5, Alyssa Freeman 4, Sydney Segroves 3, Kizzy lane 2, Joley Vincent 2, Gracie Simmons 2
3-point goals (2): Brothers, Segroves
Free throws (6-for-7): Lane 2-for-2, Lemmons 2-for-2, Thompson 2-for-3
Forrest (56): Jaide Langley 16, Kyleah Hengesbach 11, Katey Harmon 8, Madison Curtis 7, Laura Mealer 6, Sydney Hill 4, Grace Thrasher 4
3-point goals (2): Langley, Curtis
Free throws (10-for-14): Hengesbach 5-for-7, Harmon 2-for-2, Mealer 2-for-2, Langley 1-for-1, Hill 0-for-2