Goldsboro forward Amaya Lucas

Goldsboro forward Amaya Lucas dribbles the basketball around a Kinston defender, while Keturah Artis (33) sets up a block.

Kinston’s Michyla Dove torched Goldsboro for 12 points and led Kinston to a 64-24 victory over the Cougars.

The loss drops the Cougars to 12-5 overall and 5-2 in conference play.

“I had every bit of confidence in my team,” said Cougars head coach Latina Bullock-Thomas. “Even with us being down four girls, I told my team we need to play hard.

“I know without a shadow of a doubt if I didn’t have missing players, the game would’ve been totally different.”

In the first half, the Cougars were unable to get anything going on offensively and turned the ball multiple times.

Toward the end of the second quarter, Kinston held a 31-6 lead, thanks in part to the turnovers committed by the Cougars.

In the last two minutes of the first half, Kinston slowed down its pace and had a 31-7 lead at halftime.

During the start of the second half, Goldsboro tried to get back in the game, but Kinston always responded.

“This game is a lesson for some of our younger girls that need to experience certain games like this so they can continue to build their confidence,” Bullock-Thomas said.

In the fourth quarter, the Vikings’ lead grew as large as 43 points. The Cougars, who played much better in the second half, were unable to dig themselves out of the hole.

Mary Archibald led the Cougars with five points, while Amaya Lucas scored four points. Kaila Bell and McKayla Roberts each finished the night with three points.

“Their coach made a comment to me saying if he’d have known we were down three girls he would’ve canceled the game,” Bullock-Thomas said. “We’re not canceling the game, because we’re up for challenges, we’re not going to back down from a challenge, and for him to say that to me, it was an insult.”