Davenport's string music gives Lady Bearcats rhythm

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By John Herndon

SHEPHERDSVILLE - All it takes to get into a good rhythm is a little bit of string music. Tiffany Davenport gave Anderson County more of a good beat than Ringo Starr last Tuesday at Bullitt Central.

The junior jump-started a struggling Anderson offense with a 3-pointer just over four minutes into the season opener, then kept burning the nets with downtown bombs as the Lady Bearcats routed the hosts 74-27.

Altogether, Davenport came off the bench to sink 7 treys, including the Lady Bearcats' first two field goals of the season and a buzzer beater at the end of the first quarter that extended Anderson's lead to double digits for the first time.

Bullitt Central was never closer than that 17-7 count.

"We had a hard time getting our rhythm," Anderson coach Tony Kays. The Lady Bearcats appeared frustrated by Bullitt Central's 1-3-1 and 2-3 zones before Davenport shot the Lady Cougars out of their game plan early. "When Tiffany came in and hit those threes, we started playing much better offensively."

Davenport finished with 24 points, a career high, but did not lead the Lady Bearcats in scoring. Senior Courtney Milam tallied 28 for game scoring honors. Davenport's outburst is believed to be a Lady Bearcat single-game record and equals a school mark held by at least three former Bearcat boys' players.

Milam scored 16 points in approximately 10 minutes of second half action. Determined to stop Davenport's bombing, Bullitt Central coach Bryan Bates instructed his team to switch to a diamond-and-one, but to no avail. Milam repeatedly got free in the lane for easy buckets to further punish the hosts.

"We made some adjustments at halftime and the kids executed well," said Kays.

Bullitt Central did little to help its own cause, turning the ball over 30 times, most of which were the result of Anderson's relentless pressure. "I thought we would be able to force some turnovers," Kays said.

The fact that Anderson struggled early was not surprising as junior forward Lindsay Fultz got in early foul trouble, picking up three fouls inside the first six minutes, and senior guard Christy Gemmell went down with a deep cut to her forehead at the 1:24 mark of the first quarter. Gemmell was taken to Frankfort Regional Medical Center where the wound was treated.

"We didn't have Christy or Lindsay in, so we had to go with Makenzie Stoner and Taryn Terrell in the lineup," Kays said. "They haven't played a lot but they played very well. It might have been a little bit of a blessing."

The Lady Bearcats increased their cushion to 33-19 by halftime, then poured it on in the final 16 minutes. Bullitt Central appeared to give up the fight when Milam scored on a put back to make it 41-21 three minutes into the second half. The lead ballooned to as much as 48 points late in the game.

Anderson outscored the hosts 41-8 in the final 16 minutes.

Anderson dominated the backboards with Fultz grabbing 8 rebounds and Milam pulling down 5. Caitlyn Royalty and Mary Ann Warford both dished out 4 assists while Stoner was credited with 3.

Guard Lindsey Hester led Bullitt Central, which defeated Cornerstone Christian later in the week, with 11 points.