Lady 'Dogs turn back Longhorns

By Matt Hill

STAR STAFF

   If the head coaches of both the Hampton Lady Bulldogs and the Johnson County Lady Longhorns had walked into McDonald's after the game against each other Friday night, they would probably have been unwanted guests.
   That's because McDonald's loves to see you smile, but neither coach was very happy.
   The Lady Bulldogs defeated the Lady Longhorns 60-47 at Van Huss-White Gym, but the win didn't please Hampton head coach Leslie Campbell.
   "We were not focused before the game," Campbell said. "I've told them and told them. I'm not happy with them. We're not consistent yet. And until they learn to do their job day in and day out we're going to get killed.
   "On the scoreboard we beat them, but by watching it they beat us."
   Johnson County head coach Eric Crabtree didn't seem quite as upset, but he also wasn't very happy with what had just happened.
   "We turned the ball over way too much," Crabtree said. "Not to take anything away from them, but we beat ourselves. We just did little things enough to make us lose. We were in it the whole game, we just made silly little turnovers."
   Hampton was ahead 23-15 with 5:00 to go in the second quarter, but Johnson County went on a 9-2 run to cut the Bulldog lead to 25-24 in the final seconds of the period.
   Hampton's Jodi Stout ended the half with a bang when she nailed a trey at the buzzer to give the Bulldogs a 28-24 advantage at the intermission.
   It was one of six threes hit by Hampton, and a sign of things to come for the Lady Longhorns.
   Turnovers plagued the Lady 'Horns to start the third quarter, and Kari Stout took advantage. Stout nailed three shots in a row to give Hampton a 34-24 edge.
   "We were down for four, and turned the ball over four straight times," Crabtree said. "You figure we went down 10, then only went down three the rest of the way and that was us playing catch up the rest of the night."
   The nail in the coffin might have been when Kelly Shoun nailed back-to-back trifectas to give Hampton a 40-26 cushion. The Lady 'Horns never got within eight after that.
   Shoun led the Lady Bulldogs with 20, while Kari Stout netted 13 for Hampton.
   Those two players gave Hampton an offensive spark, but Campbell thought her team suffered a letdown after a blowout victory against Sullivan North on Tuesday.
   "I'm aggravated with them," Campbell said. "We go to Sullivan North and have a real good game, then we come in here and act like we've never played before in our lives. And until we start playing team ball and not being a bunch of individuals, it's going to be a long year."
   Andrea McQueen led Johnson County with 19, while Nikki Davidson added nine.
   Crabtree believes that the Longhorns, now 0-3 in conference play, are close to being a very good basketball team.
   "I told the girls if you were to put in like a yard stick, we're two inches from being great," Crabtree said. "At times we look awesome, then in one stretch we just totally look the other way."
   Hampton, now 4-4 overall and 3-0 in the Watauga, will play at Cloudland Monday.
   "If we play like this, we won't be able to stay in the gym with them," Campbell said.
   Johnson County will have two weeks off before playing in the High Country Classic in Boone, N.C.