Williamson girls down Mansfield, maintain NTL West lead
MANSFIELD - In the first quarter Williamson struggled against the Mansfield press.
The Warriors had difficulty getting into their offense and working the ball inside to their low-post threats as the Tigers got out to a 13-9 lead.
Mansfield eventually extended the lead to as many as 10 points in the second quarter, but that's when Williamson started to find Lori Horton inside.
Once the Warriors got the ball inside, the 6-foot, 3-inch center took over recording a double-double with 26 points and 17 rebounds to lead the Warriors to a 71-62 victory.
The win helped Williamson maintain a one-game lead over Wellsboro in the NTL West standings, while Mansfield suffered their third league loss of the season.
"We realized we needed a more inside game," Horton said of the adjustment Williamson made.
Williamson's guards knew that they needed to do a better job of getting the ball inside.
"Our guards got the ball inside better," Cheyenne Jones said of the last three quarters of the game. "It was mostly our fault, we weren't doing a good enough job."
Williamson's players knew how important Thursday's game was and they think that might have contributed to the slow start.
"Mansfield is always big for us," Jones said. "We were a little nervous at the beginning."
"We realized we needed to pick it up," Daugherty said. "We started a little cold."
Mansfield held a two-point lead at the half and after a back-and-fourth third quarter, Mansfield's leading scorer Molly Wood got two fouls in the third, leaving the game with four fouls.
"We definitely knew that once she got in foul trouble we could take advantage," Horton said.
"We knew we really needed to get it inside then," Daugherty said. "We know they have a good bench, but those players aren't as strong as her."
In the fourth quarter Wood, and teammate Jackie Hillson, were each in foul trouble and Williamson was able to capitalize extending to as much as a 16-point lead.
"That was our goal from the beginning, to try and attack and get Molly and also Jackie in foul trouble," Jones said.
In the fourth quarter the Warriors fed Horton as she had 10 of her points in the final quarter.
Williamson also got to the foul line 15 times in the fourth, connecting on 12 of those shots.
"We have pretty good free throw shooters," Horton said.
"Free throws win games," Daugherty said.
"That's what we were taught," Jones added. "We work on free throws because they win games."
For Williamson the victory sets up a big game with Wellsboro next week which will go a long way toward deciding the NTL West championship.
"We are so excited," Jones said of Thursday's win. "It's one game closer to our goal."
Along with her 26 points and 17 rebounds, Horton added three blocks and two steals in the game.
Jones had 17 points and three steals for Williamson and Daugherty had 13 points and five rebounds, with three assists.
Jamie Cook had eight points and eight assists, while Jenna Hugic had seven points and seven boards in the victory.
Emily James led Mansfield with 20 points and Hillson had 17, while Wood finished with 14.
Ali Hillson had six points in the game and Simone Lichty had three points, and Maddie York added two points for the Tigers.
Jackie Hillson had five assists, Lichty had eight steals and James added five boards in the game.
Mansfield won the JV game 23-19. Sara Wolbert had 13 points to lead Mansfield and Alyssa Davey-Bostic added eight for the Tigers.
Williamson got five points each from Danielle Cross and Caitlin Chaffee in the JV game.