02/22/04 — NL girls win EPC tourney crown

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NL girls win EPC tourney crown

By News-Argus Staff
Published in Sports on February 22, 2004 2:00 AM

Courtesy Kinston Free Press

BETHEL -- North Lenoir's Shannon Plymouth and Lonnie Jones helped their team shake off a slow start and pull away from SouthWest Edgecombe 50-41 to win the Eastern Plains 2-A Conference Tournament and the league's top seed for next week's state 2-A playoffs.

After a listless first half that yielded a 3-2 score after one period, Jones began to wheel her way through the tough Lady Cougar defense and find Plymouth waiting to convert on the baseline. The combination was devastating for SouthWest, as Jones cashed in with 11 points but dished out numerous assists ot Plymouth, who went off for 21 points. Tammy Moye chipped in 10.

"Both of us looked like we didn't want to play," North Lenoir coach Wayne Floyd said of the first period, in which the teams combined for 2-of-17 shooting. "Things just weren't falling for anybody. It picked up a little bit in the second quarter. We had a run, and then they ran at us at the end of the quarter. We got real anxious when they pulled back within four in the fourth quarter."

SouthWest rallied to trim the lead to 37-33 on a 3-pointer from Tamera Hyman and baskets from Tracey Edwards and Geye Norwood Shaw.But Jones -- who also netted conference Player of the Year honors -- and Plymouth continued to erode the Lady Cougar inside defense, connecting four more times down the stretch to ward off any further rallies.

"Plymouth had a great game, and might be our best athlete," Floyd said. "She hasn't been consistent this year. Other than that, she's a great player."

The Lady Hawks open the playoffs at home on Wednesday after a first round bye.

All-Tournament Team: Taketia May, Greene Central; Cassandra Jones, Tarboro; Monique Hudson and Tracey Edwards, SW Edgecombe; Lonnie Jones and Katie Maloney, North Lenoir.

All Conference Team: Shanita Fulford, North Pitt; Nicole Corn and Elizabeth Turner, South Lenoir; Taketia May and Briana Stanton, Greene Central; Cassandra Jones and Liz Brown, Tarboro; Lonnie Jones, Katie Maloney, Chanee Lynch and Tammy Moye, North Lenoir; Tamera Hyman, Monique Hudson, Tracy Edwards and Tahara Epps, SouthWest Edgecombe.

Player of the Year: Lonnie Jones, North Lenoir.

Co-Coaches of the Year: Wayne Floyd, North Lenoir, and Sandra Langley, SouthWest Edgecombe.